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Having rash on back. Worried it could be bat. Should I take rabies vaccine?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2004
Answered : 1722 Questions
I have a question about rabies. I have bats that fly around my house outside and the neighbors. Not sure if they are in the attic or not. I got a bruise on my arm last week that Im worried looks like a bite XXXXXXX Could i have been exposed to a bat/rabies and not know it? Would i qualify for the rabies vaccine if i am not sure i was near a bat? Im attaching a picture of the bruise.
Posted Tue, 30 Jul 2013 in Infections
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 22 minutes later

The picture appears to have healed. Was there an opening on to the skin earlier? If no it is unlikely to be bite XXXXXXX If yes, it is better to get a post exposure prophylaxis for rabies vaccine. The other way is did you hear of rabies in the locality or bat bite in the neighborhood? That gives you a clue.

Since the incubation period (from the time of bite to appearance of symptoms) is high ranging from 1 to 3 months, we cannot judge if the virus had travelled to the brain and started multiplying. Only when the virus reaches the brain the person shows symptoms.

If you have bats flying around and there is an unknown bite XXXXXXX it is better to get post exposure prophylaxis with Antirabies vaccine.

All the best. Let me know if you have more queries.
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Follow-up: Having rash on back. Worried it could be bat. Should I take rabies vaccine? 15 minutes later
As far as i can tell, the bruise is all there ever was. It wasnt a bite XXXXXXX that turned into a bruise (at least not that i noticed). The bruise just appeared one day. It just looked like the shape of a bite XXXXXXX and was concerned since i know there are bats in the neighborhood. As far as i know, no one else has been bitten or been in contact with the bats. We do not know where they are coming from. We havent found any evidence of them in the house but havent been able to get the pest control out to verify yet .
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 16 minutes later

It is most probably not a bat bite. So you can relax about rabies.

However it is important to find out more about the appearance of sudden bruise. Bruise is a result of rupture of blood capillaries into the skin and they change the color of the skin while healing. If you keep noticing them again please attend to the nearest doctor to find out the reason for bruise. Vitamin Deficiency, anemia and some inheritable disorders cause easy bruising.

Let me know if you need any clarification.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Having rash on back. Worried it could be bat. Should I take rabies vaccine? 3 minutes later
Ok thank you! So i do not need a vaccine, correct?
Answered by Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar 17 hours later
Yes you do not need one.

According to CDC any suspicion of bite from rabid animal one can get a pre exposure prophylaxis. This prevents from rabies even if there is a bite in future.
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