A study of scrub typhus in a medical college hospital in West Bengal, India


  • Tapati Mondal
  • Abhik Sarkar
  • Julius Rahaman
  • Subhayan Das Gupta




Scrub typhus, Orientia tsutsugamushi, fever, eschar, children


Introduction and Aim: Scrub typhus is one of the leading causes of acute unexplained fever in children. The objective of this study was to determine the serological evidence of scrub typhus and associated clinical features in febrile children.


Materials and Methods: This retrospective observational study was performed for a duration of 21 months. Children aged below 12 years, admitted with unexplained fever and other clinical features suggestive of scrub typhus and tested for IgM against scrub typhus were included in our study. A detailed history, clinical profile and sero-prevalence of the children were analysed from record files.


Results: Four hundred and seventy one clinically suspected patients of below 12 years were tested for scrub typhus. Out of 471, 172 children were scrub typhus positive. Maximum number of positive cases were detected between the month of August and November. Fever was present in all patients. Nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, cough, hepatomegaly, splenomegaly, lymphadenopathy, rash, convulsion and jaundice were other presenting clinical features. Eschar was observed only in 2.91% cases.


Conclusion: Scrub typhus is to be suspected in every children present with unexplained fever. Early diagnosis and early initiation of specific therapy is crucial for favourable outcome. 


Author Biographies

Tapati Mondal

Department of Microbiology, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay Government Medical College and Hospital, Howrah, West Bengal, India

Abhik Sarkar

Department of Microbiology, Malda Medical College and Hospital, Malda, West Bengal, India

Julius Rahaman

Department of Microbiology, Malda Medical College and Hospital, Malda, West Bengal, India

Subhayan Das Gupta

Department of Microbiology, Malda Medical College and Hospital, Malda, West Bengal, India


Zainab, M., Gupta, A.K., Guha, S. Scrub Typhus in Children. J Nepal Paediatr Soc. 2018; 38(1):59-62. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3126/jnps.v38i1.18659

Krishnan, M.P., Padarthi, S.C. Clinical, laboratory profile and outcome of scrub typhus in children. IOSR Journal of Dental and Medical Sciences (IOSR-JDMS). Feb.2016; 15 (2): 30-32. DOI: https://doi.org/10.9790/0853-1509120407

Jain, N., Jain, V. Study on clinico- laboratory profile of children with scrub typhus. J Nepal Paediatr Soc 2012; 32(2):187-192. DOI: https://doi.org/10.3126/jnps.v32i2.5683

Kishore, E., Sreedhar, S. V. S. Clinical profile and complications: scrub typhus in children at a tertiary hospital in south India, Nellore. International Journal of Contemporary Pediatrics. 2021 Mar;8(3):545-549. DOI: https://doi.org/10.18203/2349-3291.ijcp20210661

Bajracharya, L. Scrub typhus in children at Tribhuvan university teaching hospital in Nepal. Pediatric Health, Medicine and Therapeutics. 2020;11: 193-202. DOI: https://doi.org/10.2147/PHMT.S253106

Palanivel, S., Nedunchelian, K, Poovazhagi V, Raghunadan R, Ramachandran P. Clinical profile of scrub typhus in children. Indian J Pediatr. 2012;79:1459-1462. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12098-012-0721-0

Mathai, E., Rolain, J.M., Verghese, G.M., Abraham, O.C., Mathai, D., Mathai, M., et al., Outbreak of scrub typhus in southern India during the cooler months. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2003;990:359-364. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1749-6632.2003.tb07391.x

Kalal, B.S., Puranik, P., Nagaraj, S., Rego, S., Shet, A. Scrub typhus and spotted fever among hospitalised children in South India: Clinical profile and serological epidemiology. Indian J Med Microbiol. 2016;34:293-298. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4103/0255-0857.188315

Sankhyan, N., Saptharishi, L.G., Sasidaran, K., Kanga, A., Singhi, S. Clinical profile of scrub typhus in children and its association with Haemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis. Indian Pediatr. 2014;51:651-653. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13312-014-0470-4

Huang, C.T., Chi, H., Lee, H.C., Chiu, N.C., Huang, F.Y. Scrub typhus in children in a teaching hospital in eastern Taiwan, 2000-2005. Southeast Asian J Trop Med Public Health. 2009;40(4):789-794.

Kumar, M., Krishnamurthy, S., Delhikumar, C.G., Narayanan, P., Biswal, N., Srinivasan, S. Scrub typhus in children at a tertiary hospital in southern India: Clinical profile and complications. J Infect Public Health. 2012;5(1):82-88. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jiph.2011.11.001

Sirisanthana, V., Puthanakit, T., Sirisanthana, T. Epidemiologic, clinical and laboratory features of scrub typhus in thirty Thai children. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2003;22(4):341-345. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1097/01.inf.0000059400.23448.57

Mahajan, S.K., Kashyap, R., Kanga, A., Sharma, V., Prasher, B.S., Pal, L.S. Relevance of Weil-Felix test in diagnosis of scrub typhus in India. J Assoc Physicians India. 2006; 54:619-621.

Pathak, S., Chaudhary, N., Dhakal, P., Shakya, D., Dhungel, P., Neupane, G., Shrestha, S., et al., Clinical profile, complications and outcome of scrub typhus in children: A hospital based observational study in central Nepal. PLoS ONE. 2019 Aug 13;14(8):e00220905. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0220905

Bal, M., Mohanta, M.P., Sahu, S., Dwibedi, B., Pati, S., Ranjit, M. Profile of Pediatric Scrub Typhus in Odisha, India. Indian Pediatrics. 2019 Apr 1; 56(4):304-306. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13312-019-1519-1

Digra, S.K., Saini, G.S., Singh, V., Sharma, S.D., Kaul, R. Scrub typhus in children: Jammu Experience. JK Science Journal of Medical Education and Research. 2010; 12(2): 95-97.

Mahajan, S.K., Rolain, J.M., Sankhyan, N., Kaushal, R.K., Raoult, D. Pediatric scrub typhus in Indian Himalayas. Indian J Pediatrics. 2008;75:947-949. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12098-008-0198-z

Rakholia, R., Rawat, V., Chaturvedi, P. Scrub typhus meningoencephalitis in children from a tertiary care centre, Uttarakhand, India. Ann Med Health Sci Res. 2017; 7: 388-392.




How to Cite

Mondal T, Sarkar A, Rahaman J, Das Gupta S. A study of scrub typhus in a medical college hospital in West Bengal, India. Biomedicine [Internet]. 2022 Nov. 14 [cited 2022 Nov. 27];42(5):1091-3. Available from: https://biomedicineonline.org/home/article/view/1942



Short Communications

Plum Analytics