City in China issues a bubonic plague alert!

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Image credit to commons.wikimedia.org. Image modified from original.

Health officials from a city in the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia issued a bubonic plague warning on Sunday after a suspected case of the highly infectious disease known as the “Black Death” was revealed.

Officials from Inner Mongolia, a city in the Chinese region, announced an alert after a speculated case of the highly contagious disease, also known as “Black Death,” was examined.

The health officials of Bayannur declared a 3rd-level alert, to implore citizens in reporting any speculated cases of fever with no explainable causes. The city also prohibited the eating and hunting of animals that could be a carrier of the plague. The city also required the citizens to report any dead or sick marmots— the instructions will persist until the end of the year.

“There were four reported cases of plague in Inner Mongolia last November, including two pneumonic plagues, a deadlier variant of plague,” as outlined by the Independent. A Mongolian couple died of the bubonic plague after consuming raw marmot kidneys.

Its most popular form is bubonic, which is caused by the bite of fleas carried by afflicted rodents, which causes swelling of the lymph node.

The corpse of animals is now viewed as carriers of the disease. The more virulent form is pneumonic plague, which can spread between humans through coughing. The prominent symptoms of the plague are painful swollen lymph nodes, fever, chills, severe headache, body aches, and fatigue.

The disease can be prevented with antibiotics if caught early, but that doesn’t always occur because the illness is so rare, and the symptoms like fever and body aches mirror those of the flu.

The bubonic plague is one of 3 kinds of plague caused by bacterium Yersinia pestis, a zoonotic bacteria usually found in mammals with their fleas.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention described what humans experience when they are afflicted with the bubonic plague:

“Patients develop sudden onset of fever, headache, chills, and weakness and one or more swollen, tender and painful lymph nodes (called buboes). This form is usually the result of an infected flea bite. The bacteria multiply in the lymph node closest to where the bacteria entered the human body. If the patient is not treated with appropriate antibiotics, the bacteria can spread to other parts of the body.”

During the 14th century, the Black Death caused more than 50 million deaths in Europe. Thanks to antibiotics, the CDC claims the mortality rate is 16% in the present time.

From 2010 to 2015, there were 3,248 confirmed bubonic plague cases reported worldwide, along with 584 deaths, according to the World Health Organization.

This comes a week after researchers in China found a new type of swine flu that can affect humans. The G4 virus is a strain of the H1N1 swine flu that exhibits “all the essential hallmarks of a candidate pandemic virus.”

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