Anthrax – Kazakhstan
3 people have been infected with Anthrax in Kazakhstan, after the disease had spread around cattle herds in the region.
Anthrax is a bacterial infectious disease. The incubation time lies between 1 day and 2 months. The symptoms depend on how anthrax enters the body, e.g. by inhalation or by direct contact. Inhalation anthrax is considered to be the most lethal form.
The region has been placed under quarantine to avoid further spreading.
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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