Human Monocytic Ehrlichiosis
Human monocytic ehrlichiosis (HME) is a rickettsial
disease characterized by fever, headache, muscle aches
and pain, anorexia, abdominal pain, and confusion occurring
1-3 weeks following the bite of an infected lone star
tick, Amblyomma americanum. The probable reservoirs
are the white-tailed deer, Odocoileus virginianus,
and wild rodents. Infection prevalence of the causative
agent Ehrlichia chaffeensis in lone star ticks
is about 12%, while the prevalence of E. ewingii,
a similar ehrlichial pathogen, is approximately 8%.
The American dog tick is considered a secondary vector
of E. chaffeensis. Over 10 cases of HME have
been reported annually in New Jersey since 1995.
Disease Fact Sheet