Left untreated, tularemia can be fatal. Other possible complications include:

  • Inflammation of the lungs (pneumonia). Pneumonia can lead to respiratory failure — a condition in which the lungs don't take in enough oxygen, don't release enough carbon dioxide or both.
  • Infection around the brain and spinal cord (meningitis). Meningitis is a serious and sometimes life-threatening infection of the fluid and membranes (meninges) surrounding the brain and spinal cord.
  • Irritation around the heart (pericarditis). This is swelling and irritation of the pericardium, the thin membrane that surrounds the heart. Mild pericarditis may improve without treatment, but more-serious cases may require antibiotic therapy.
  • Bone infection (osteomyelitis). Tularemia bacteria sometimes spread to the bones.
July 08, 2015