The plague is one of the most devastating epidemics of human history. Especially in the Middle Ages the "black death" demanded millions of human lives. Even today there are still epidemics in some regions. The World Health Organization( WHO) now warns that the plague currently occurring in Madagascar could spread further.
Plague could spread from Madagascar
The dangerous infectious disease plague has accompanied mankind for thousands of years and has led in the past to devastating epidemics with millions of death victims. Even today, there are cases of illness in some regions. The plague currently occurs in Madagascar. The World Health Organization( WHO) now warns that the disease could spread to other countries in the region.
Disease can now be treated with antibiotics
The plague is a highly infecting bacterial infection disease. The most frequent form is bubonic plague, which is associated with fever, headache, limb pain and inflammation of the lymph nodes in the groin.
In the Middle Ages, millions of people died on the so-called "Black Death".Nowadays the disease can be treated with antibiotics. Nevertheless, people are still dying. According to WHO, there were 3,248 cases worldwide, including 584 deaths, from 2010 to 2015."The three most final countries are the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar and Peru," the organization writes on its website.
Epidemic Season has just begun
Dr. Charlotte Ndiaye, WHO's representative in Madagascar, stated in a statement on the situation in her country: "The WHO is concerned that the plague could spread because it is already present in several cities and is now the beginning of the epidemic season, which generally lasts from September to April. "
In addition, because of the numerous flight connections, there is a danger that the highly contagious epidemic also reaches the neighboring islands in the Indian Ocean, said WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier, according to a statement from the AFP news agency.
However, the danger is only "moderately high".The WHO therefore does not issue a travel warning. The expert considered the danger of spreading beyond the region as "low".
Inadequate health care and poor hygiene
There are pest waves every year in Madagascar. Usually the disease is transmitted by rats. Experts are blamed for poor hygiene and poor health care for the recurring plague cases on the island.
According to the AFP report, 133 people have already been infected since a new outbreak in early August, 24 of which have since died.
As it is said, this year is especially dangerous that cases of bumps and rarer lung pains occur at the same time. This is transmitted from person to person and can - if left untreated - kill the affected person within 24 hours.
It is also aggravating that the epidemic has now reached even larger places, including the capital Antananarivo.(ad)