Q fever reports increase

REPORTS of cases of Q fever on the Coffs Coast last week have brought a number of responses from readers.

It has since been confirmed that the recent death of one local man, who had Q fever, was not caused by the bacteria but by a rare blood disorder which he had contracted.

Another Coffs Harbour reader who contracted Q fever in 2002 said he had been told by his GP, who had immediately and correctly identified his disease, that he caught the bacteria after being bitten by a so-called grass tick – an immature paralysis tick.

The man, who did not want to be identified, said he had lived on a farm near Tabulam when he caught the fever, but there had been no cattle on it for 10 years.

A third reader said while the director of public health for the North Coast, Paul Corben, had said there was nothing to link two recent Northern Beaches cases, he would suggest health authorities looked at rainfall, summer and mosquitoes.

“Mosquitoes thrive at Emerald and Moonee, and conditions are favouring breeding,” he said.

Mosquitoes are known to transmit Ross River fever and Barmah Forest virus.



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