Two new cases of plague amongst humans has been found in New Mexico, bringing this year’s total up to 3.
While the patients were hospitalized, and made full recoveries, doctors are still warning the general population to be on the lookout.
Plague is a bacterial disease from rodents. It is usually transmitted through flea bites.
The Daily Mail reports:
Of the three cases, two were bubonic, and one pneumonic. There are three types of human plague, with the third being septicemic, all of which have different symptoms.
Pneumonic plague is the most serious of the three cases, and is the only one that can be spread from person to person via infectious droplets.
Plague is a bacterial disease of rodents, and is usually transmitted to humans through infected flea bites. However, it can also be transmitted by direct contact with infected animals including rodents and pets.
Symptoms include sudden onset of fever, chills, headache and weakness.
State public health veterinarian Paul Ettestad said it might be present in fleas that infest wild rodents in Santa Fe County, including within the city limits of Santa Fe and in other locations around New Mexico.
Health workers are conducted environmental investigations around the homes of the three patients to look for ongoing risk and to ensure the safety of the immediate family members and neighbors.
Authorities say that although plague is now treatable, it is still important to take preventative measures.
If any rodents are found on the premises, make sure to clean up. Watch out for any flea bites. Making sure to use appropriate shampoos and washes on any pets will also prevent any disease ridden fleas from entering the home.