While the country experiences regular outbreaks, with an estimated 400 cases of plague each year, this time things are very different, experts warn.
Of the 684 cases reported as of October 12, 474 were pneumonic plague, 156 bubonic and 1 septicemic plague. A further 54 were unspecified, according to WHO.
Of Madagascar’s 114 districts, 35 have reported cases of plague, including at least 10 cities.
Plague is caused by infection with the bacterium Yersinia pestis and is typically spread through the bite of infected fleas, frequently carried by rats, causing bubonic plague. Symptoms include painful, swollen lymph nodes, called bubos, as well as fever, chills and coughing.
Pneumonic plague is more virulent or damaging and is an advanced form characterized by a severe lung infection. The infection can be transmitted from person to person via airborne droplets — coughing or sneezing. The incubation period is short, and an infected person may die within …
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