Brucella infection is an infection that may be transmitted from animals to humans. People are usually infected by eating unpasteurized raw dairy products. Bacteria may spread through the air or by direct contact with diseased animals.

Moreover, brucella infection affects hundreds of millions of humans and animals across the globe. It may be prevented by avoiding raw dairy products and taking measures while dealing with animals or in laboratories.


Three types of brucella infection include:

  • Brucella suis
  • Brucella melitensisĀ 
  • Brucella abortus


Brucella infection symptoms may appear anywhere from a few days to a few months after infection. The following symptoms and signs are similar to those of the flu:

  • Chills
  • Sweats
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Appetite loss
  • Weakness
  • Back, joint, and muscle pain

Symptoms of brucella infection may fade for weeks or months, only to reappear later. Some patients develop chronic infections and have symptoms for years after therapy. Long-term symptoms and indicators may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Endocarditis
  • Arthritis
  • Recurrent fevers
  • Spondylitis
  • Sacroiliitis


Physicians commonly diagnose brucella infection by testing blood or bone marrow for the brucella bacteria or blood for antibodies to the virus. Your doctor may request further tests to help identify complications of this illness, such as:

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computerized tomography (CT) scan. Imaging tests like these may help determine whether or not there are abscesses or inflammation in the brain or other tissues.
  • Echocardiography. This test creates pictures of your heart using sound waves in order to look for any indications of damage or infection to your heart.
  • X-rays. This may identify changes in your joints and bones.
  • Cerebrospinal fluid culture. A little sample of the fluid around your spinal cord and brain is tested for illnesses such as encephalitis and meningitis.


Brucella infection treatment aims to alleviate symptoms, prevent a recurrence, and avoid consequences. Antibiotics will be required for at least six weeks, and the symptoms may last many months. The condition could reappear and become persistent.

Antibiotics prescribed by doctors to treat brucella include:

  • Rifampin
  • Trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (TMP/SMX)
  • Doxycycline
  • Streptomycin or gentamicin
  • Ciprofloxacin

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