Clinical manifestations of tularemia in Japan--analysis of 1,355 cases observed between 1924 and 1987

Infection. Jan-Feb 1991;19(1):14-7. doi: 10.1007/BF01643750.


A total of 1,355 cases of tularemia observed between 1924 and 1987 in Japan were viewed on the basis of clinical manifestations and the results were compared with those in the United States. The incubation period varied from one day to over one month. In 75.5% of cases, the symptoms of illness appeared within seven days with the peak on the third day. A sudden onset of flu-like symptoms was generally observed, and 92% of cases was followed by regional lymph node swelling which mostly appeared in axillary and cubital regions. They were observed predominantly at the left rather than the right side. In contrast with the cases in the United States, the number of cases of ulceroglandular type in Japan was only one third of those of glandular type. None of the pleuropulmonary cases or fatal tularemia have been reported in Japan. The number of oropharyngeal cases has remarkably increased after World War II, and is still on the rise, presumably because of the change of dietary habits in Japan. All these characteristics of Japanese tularemia are assumed to be caused by low virulence of Japanese strains of Francisella tularensis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Axilla
  • Hospitals, General
  • Humans
  • Influenza, Human / diagnosis
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Lymphatic Diseases / classification
  • Lymphatic Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Lymphatic Diseases / etiology
  • Time Factors
  • Tularemia / classification
  • Tularemia / epidemiology*
  • Tularemia / etiology
  • United States / epidemiology