Fact sheet – Plague Plague is two diseases caused by bacteria



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FACT SHEET – Plague
Plague is two diseases caused by bacteria

  • The germs are carried by rats, prairie dogs, and other rodents.

  • There are two kinds of plague:

    • Bubonic (boo-bon-ick)

    • Pneumonic (new-mon-ick)

The two kinds of plague act differently

Bubonic plague

  • It is not spread from person to person.

  • It spreads by bites from fleas that have bitten animals with plague.

  • Sickness begins 1–8 days after being bitten by an infected flea. Symptoms include

fever, chills, weakness, and sore lumps under the skin (“buboes”).

Pneumonic plague

  • It can be spread from person to person, usually through liquids from the nose and mouth.

  • It can also be caused by bubonic plague getting into the lungs.

  • S
    FOR MORE INFORMATION:

    Tennessee Department of Health

    Nashville, Tennessee

    http://health.state.tn.us/CEDS/bioterrorism.htm
    Tennessee Regional Poison Center

    Nashville, Tennessee

    EMERGENCY: 1-800-222-1222

    [INSERT Local Health Department Name]



    [INSERT Local Health Dept phone #]
    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Atlanta, GA

    Toll free: 1-800-311-3435

    http://www.bt.cdc.gov/agent/plague

    ickness begins in 1–4 days. Symptoms include pneumonia, chest pains, difficulty breathing, and coughing.

PNEUMONIC PLAGUE IS VERY RARE

Plague can be treated

  • Antibiotics are used to treat both kinds of plagues.

  • People with pneumonic plague may need more special care.

  • There is no vaccine to prevent plague.

  • People can lower the chances of getting plague by

    • controlling rodents (rats, mice, etc.)

    • staying away from wild animals

    • staying away from people who have pneumonic plague



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