Below. This is caused by a small bacteria which produces a small skin lesion at the site of the scratch in 1/2-3/4 of patients. Lymph nodes enlarge in the area closer to the body within about 10-14 days. At first these may be firm and tender, but then may break down and drain persistently. In some patients, particularly with impaired immune function it can affect the eye, liver, nervous system, etc.