Anthrax – India
There was a suspected outbreak of anthrax in a village in Jeypore, Odisha, India, which is linked to one death and affecting five others.
Ten days ago there was a community feast where people ate meat, and six people ended up showing symptoms of anthrax. Two people were admitted that same to Lamatapur community health centre.
Local health officials are distributing medicines and conducting door-to-door surveys to track down cases.
Photo: Bacillus anthracis from an agar culture with spores (blue).
Anthrax is an infection caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. It can occur in four forms: skin, lungs, intestinal, and injection. Anthrax is spread by contact with the bacterium’s spores, which often appear in infectious animal products.
The skin form presents with a small blister with surrounding swelling that often turns into a painless ulcer with a black center.
The inhalation form presents with fever, chest pain, and shortness of breath.
The intestinal form presents with diarrhea which may contain blood, abdominal pains, nausea, and vomiting.
The injection form presents with fever and an abscess at the site of drug injection.
Human anthrax is most common in Africa and central and southern Asia, though it can occur anywhere. Skin infections represent more than 95% of cases.
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