Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 24  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 849-864

Neurological facets of scrub typhus: A comprehensive narrative review

1 Department of Neurology, Neo Hospital, Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Department of Medicine, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Divyani Garg
Consultant Neurologist, Department of Neurology, Neo Hospital, Noida, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/aian.aian_739_21

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Scrub typhus is one of the most frequent causes of acute febrile illness in South and South-east Asian countries. Neurological features accompany 20% of scrub typhus infections, and may affect the central or peripheral nervous system, and sometime, may even occur in combination. Of late, its recognition among clinicians has increased with widening detection of its cutaneous hallmark, called eschar. Multiple mechanisms underlie neurological involvement, including direct invasion (meningitis, encephalitis), vasculitis (myositis) or immune-mediated mechanisms (opsoclonus, myoclonus, optic neuritis, Guillain–Barre syndrome). Despite an immunological basis for several neurological manifestations, response to doxycycline is remarkable, although immune therapy may be necessary for severe involvement. Scientific literature on scrub typhus neurology chiefly emanates from case reports, case series and small studies, and a comprehensive review is warranted to aid clinicians in recognising neurological involvement. This review aims at enriching this gap, and summarises clinical features, laboratory findings, and treatment options for various neurological facets of scrub typhus.

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