Medical Conditions: Rocky Mountain spotted fever

Benson v. Uninsured Employers' Fund [08/21/13] 2013 MTWCC 22 Petitioner failed to meet his burden in proving he contracted Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) through his work as a hunting guide in November 2009. Although one physician who had never treated RMSF diagnosed him with the condition due to the presence of one of the disease’s antibodies, a specialist who had treated patients with RMSF testified it was more probable than not that Petitioner did not have the disease because: RMSF usually occurs in the spring and early summer; Petitioner did not exhibit the typical symptoms of the disease; and the RMSF antibody found in Petitioner can remain for years and likely represented an old infection.  Because Petitioner later developed reactive arthritis which is not known to be caused by RMSF but which is caused by prostatitis, it is just as likely, if not more likely, that Petitioner was suffering from prostatitis, the condition with which he was initially diagnosed.