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Animals and human

Either through the cutaneous or inhalation. Person-to-person transmission is exceedingly unusual.

Case Fatality Ratio
Case Fatality Ratio Pathway/conditions Population References
33.8% (of 145) Not Reported Alor Setar region of Kedah, Malaysia

Mean age of 50 years

10% Uncomplicated cases Not Reported [2]
up to 80% Cases with bacteraemia or sepsis Not Reported [2]
41% (11/27) 28-day mortality rate Not Reported [3]
36.9% (79/214) Not Reported Adult Thai Patients [4]
36% (12/33) With therapy and intensive care Northern Australia (1990-91 outbreak) [5]
Incubation Times
Days Pathway Population Reference
1-21 days (mean: 9) Cutaneous/Inhalation Norhtern Australia 1989-99 (252 cases) [6]
Incidence Rates
Incidence Population References
16.35 per 100,000 Alor Setar region, Kedah, Malaysia [1]
4.9 per 100,000 (95% CI: 3.9-6.1) Sa Kaeo, Thailand 2006-08 [7]
14.9 per 100,000(95% CI: 13.3-16.6) Nakhon Phanom, Thailand 2006-08 [7]

Duration of infectiousness and disease

In the 10 year study (1989-99) completed in Northern Australia, 252 cases of Melioidosis were examined for acute and chronic illness and also relapse and reactivation.
Acute illness (<2 months) occurred in 222 (88%) of the cases.
Chronic illness (symptomatic for >2 months) occurred in 30 (12%) of the cases.[6]
Of the survivors of the initial infection (207 patients), 27 (13%) had a confirmed relapse over 10 years.[6]


Some recognizable symptoms of Melioidosis are common flu-like symptoms, such as cough, chest pain, high fever, headache, and loss of appetite. Other symptoms indicative of a bloodstream infection include respiratory distress, abdominal discomfort, joint pain, muscle tenderness, disorientation. Disseminated infection symptoms also are weight loss, stomache or chest pain, and possible seizures. A localized infection can produce localized pain and sweling with ulceration and abscess.[8]

Excretion Rates (see Exposure)


Gram -, facultative anaerobic, motile bacillus [2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Muhammad RA Hassan, Subhada P Pani, Ng P Peng, Kirtanaa Voralu, Natesan Vijayalakshmi, Ranjith Mehanderkar, Norasmidar A Aziz, Edwin Michael. (2010) Incidence, risk factors and clinical epidemiology of melioidosis: a complex socio-ecological emerging infectious disease in the Alor Setar region of Kedah, Malaysia. BMC Infectious Diseases. 10:302. Full Text
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Wikipedia
  3. NAM SU KU , SANG HOON HAN , CHANG OH KIM , JI-HYEON BAEK , SU JIN JEONG , SUNG JOON JIN , JUN YONG CHOI , YOUNG GOO SONG & JUNE MYUNG KIM. (2011) Risk factors for mortality in patients with Burkholderia cepacia complex bacteraemia. Scandinavian Journal of Infectious Diseases, 43: 792–797 Full Text
  4. Simpson, A. J. H., Suputtamongkol, Y., Smith, M. D., Angus, B. J., Rajanuwong, A., Wuthiekanun, V., Howe, P. A., et al. (1999). Comparison of Imipenem and Ceftazidime as Therapy for Severe Melioidosis. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 29(2), 381–387. doi:10.1086/520219 Full Text
  5. Currie, B., Howard, D., Nguyen, V. T., Withnall, K., & Merianos, A. (1993). The 1990-1991 outbreak of melioidosis in the Northern Territory of Australia: clinical aspects. The Southeast Asian journal of tropical medicine and public health, 24(3), 436–443. Full Text
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Currie, B. J., Fisher, D. A., Anstey, N. M., & Jacups, S. P. (2000). Melioidosis: acute and chronic disease, relapse and re-activation. Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 94(3), 301–304. doi:10.1016/S0035-9203(00)90333-X Full Text
  7. 7.0 7.1 Bhengsri, S., Baggett, H. C., Jorakate, P., Kaewpan, A., Prapasiri, P., Naorat, S., Thamthitiwat, S., et al. (2011). Incidence of Bacteremic Melioidosis in Eastern and Northeastern Thailand. The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 85(1), 117–120. doi:10.4269/ajtmh.2011.11-0070 Full Text
  8. CDC