Sat. Mar 2nd, 2024
First human case of bubonic plague confirmed in Oregon by health officials since 2015

In 2015, Oregon reported its last case of human plague. This week, health officials announced that a resident of the state had been infected with bubonic plague, the first case since then. It is believed that the resident contracted the disease from their cat, according to Deschutes County Health Services. All close contacts of the resident and their pet have been contacted and provided medication to prevent illness, as stated by Dr. Richard Fawcett, the Deschutes County health officer.

The bubonic plague can progress to more severe forms if not diagnosed early, such as septicemic plague (bloodstream infection) and/or pneumonic plague (lung infection). However, officials reassured the community that there is little risk since the case was identified and treated in its early stages. There have been no additional cases of plague reported during the communicable disease investigation.

To prevent further spread of the disease, officials advised residents and pets to avoid contact with rodents and fleas, including sick or injured rodents. Central Oregon warned that squirrels and chipmunks are common carriers of bubonic plague in this area, although mice and other rodents can also carry it. Humans typically begin showing symptoms within two to eight days of exposure to the plague, which include fever, nausea, weakness, chills, muscle aches and visibly swollen lymph nodes called buboes.

By Editor

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