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About Bubonic Plague

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1sticky About Bubonic Plague on July 30th 2014, 3:29 am


A brief history
Through the ages this plague has been known by several names. It is called The Plague(with capital P) , bubonic plague, and more frightening, black death.

This particular plague was most active around 1348 AD and is in fact responsible for killing approximately 1/3 of the known worlds population.

How Deadly Is It?
The bacteria that cause this plague is so deadly that it only takes a single germ to become infected. In fact this bacteria is so deadly that even the mildest form (bubonic plague) leaves an untreated person with only a 40% chance to live. The later more virulent types (pneumonic plague, and septicemic plague) are 99% lethal to anyone who has not been treated within 24 hours after being infected.


After becoming infected the bacteria lays dormant from 2-5 days. Shortly after this it causes the lymph glands to swell and be tender. It is also accompanied by what is called a hemorrhagic fever. This means that the person infected will have both a high fever and actual internal bleeding. The bleeding is so bad that it actually appears underneath the skin. As the blood clots capillaries become blocked and it causes tissue to die and turn black (hence the name black death). Of course the usual headaches and chills accompany this.

There are 3 types of plague

The first is what most people are most familiar with and it is called bubonic plague. It can be caught by being bitten by a flea that carries the bacteria on its body. This form is not air borne and can only be transmitted by being bitten. A flea can then bite someone already infected and jump off and bite someone else infecting another host. It mainly infects the lymph nodes.

The second type is called pneumonic plague. This is basically where the bacteria infects the lungs. The lungs of the infected person then act as a germ factory providing the bacteria with the perfect means to reproduce and spread via coughing and sneezing (air droplets). This of course makes it highly contagious and at this point will spread like wildfire as each exhale from the infected person contains a high concentration of the bacteria and as discussed above, it only takes a single germ to infect a person.  

The third type of the bacteria is the most deadly. It is called septicemic plague and unlike the other two types infects the blood stream. It has all the symptoms except that it does not swell the lymph nodes and because it infects the blood stream is extremely fast at killing those infected (death usually occurs in a matter of hours from the time of infection).  

The preferred treatment for this bacteria is (believe it or not) Streptomycin. Gentamycin & tetracycline will also work.  

Is It Still Around
YES! Its still around and still infecting people. There are about 1000 cases reported world wide each year. At the time of posting parts of the outskirts of the capital of China have been quarantined. There is also 2 people in the state of New Mexico (USA) in the west nature park area that are currently being treated and expected to survive.  There is also an outbreak of pneumonic plague in the Province of Gansu (China) and another in the city of Apolo (Bolivia).  In all cases to keep panic down the events are being reported as heat wave victims.



Here is the little germ that is so BA.
About Bubonic Plague Bp410

swollen lymph node (buboe)
About Bubonic Plague Bp310

Dead Fingers
About Bubonic Plague Images10

Dead Toes
About Bubonic Plague Bp110
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About Bubonic Plague Images11

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