We report a patient with cat-scratch disease presenting with meningitis and neuroretinitis. This condition, caused by Bartonella henselae, has a worldwide distribution and is among the most common infective causes of neuroretinitis. Bartonella neuroretinitis is a rare but under-recognised mimic of optic neuritis; it should be suspected in a patient with an infective prodrome whose fundus shows optic disc oedema and a macular star. A low-positive initial serological test for Bartonella henselae does not exclude cat-scratch disease if there is high clinical suspicion, and repeat testing is recommended to look for titre rise.
A negative test does not exclude Bartonella either.