Infectious Disease Compendium

Capnocytophaga

Microbiology

Long, thin gram negative rod. Two groups: 1) C. ochracea, C. gingivalis, C. granulosa, C. haemolytica, C. sputigena, in humans. 2) C. canimorsus and C. cynodegmi found in the mouths of primarily dogs, cats and rabbits.

Epidemiologic Risks

Doggy bites and the occasional cat bite.  Although licking or casual contact; there was a case presented at conference of meningitis in a child.  The family dog liked to lick the childs head, probably thinking it like a Tootsie Roll Pop (Reference).

Syndromes

Human Capnocytophaga: periodontitis and occasional bacteremia in the neutropenic.

Animal Capnocytophaga: purpura fulminans like sepsis in asplenics, alcoholics and steroid patients when Cujo returns i.e. dog bites.  Also meningitis and sepsis.  25% mortality rate (PubMed).

Treatment

Human derived: clindamycin, erythromycin, tetracyclines, quinolone, OR imipenem, with variable susceptibilities to penicillin, expanded-spectrum cephalosporins, aztreonam, vancomycin, metronidazole.

Animal derived: penicillin is preferred, but is sensitive to imipenem, erythromycin, clindamycin, third generation cephalosporins, tetracyclines, OR quinolone, but resistant to aztreonam.

Notes