Three people have died from anthrax and another 93 have contracted the disease. after eating infected meat in Indonesia.
Health officials confirmed that the outbreak took place in the Gunung Kidul district of Yogyakarta, which is to the south of the country’s most populous island, Java.
Anthrax is a serious infectious disease caused by the microorganism Bacillus anthracis, which occurs naturally in soil and can affect domestic and wild animals, which can then transmit the disease to humans.
It can take up to two months for symptoms to appear. Depending on the type of infection, fever, skin sores and blisters, difficulty breathing, abdominal pain, and nausea may occur.
If anthrax is not treated in time, it can lead to serious illness and death.
Dewi Irawati, head of the Gunung Kidul Regency Health Department, said when they received news that a 73-year-old man had died in hospital from suspected anthrax, they immediately launched an investigation, reports The Telegraph.
“We found that the patient was also distributing the meat to dozens of other residents in his neighborhood.” So we ran blood tests on 125 residents and found that 85 of them were infected,” Ms. Irawati said.
Many of the residents had symptoms such as diarrhea, skin sores and rashes, but were treated with antibiotics.
According to local media reports, the number of infections has since risen to 93.
Anthrax can also be transmitted through skin contact and inhalation, and became widely known in 2001 when it was used as a biological weapon in the United States.
Powdered anthrax spores were mailed, resulting in five deaths and 17 illnesses.
Meanwhile, an outbreak among drug users in Scotland between 2009 and 2010 left 14 dead and 119 infected, the BBC reported.
A report by Health Protection Scotland (HPS) said it was “the first documented heroin-related outbreak anywhere in the world”.
It concluded that the anthrax came from “contaminated heroin imported into Scotland”.
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