Rabies

  • Medical Author:
    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

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What is the prognosis of rabies?

Once the symptoms of rabies start, the disease is nearly universally fatal.

Is it possible to prevent rabies? Is there a rabies vaccine?

Rabies prevention is mostly about good pet care and outdoor behavior. Vaccinate pets and keep them away from wild and outdoor animals. Don't approach wild animals. Keep bats out of the home, and stay away from areas with bats (caves).

When traveling, be aware of stray animals.

If spending significant time in a country where rabies is common, consider getting vaccinated.

Medically reviewed by Robert Cox, MD; American Board of Internal Medicine with subspecialty in Infectious Disease

REFERENCES:

Gaeta, T.J., M.L. Magarelli, F. Flores, and J.R. Balentine. "Patient noncompliance with rabies immunoprophylaxis." J Emerg Med. 15.3 May-June 1997: 378-379.

Switzerland. World Health Organization. "Rabies." Aug. 2014. <http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs099/en/>.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/18/2016
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