Plague - Doctor answers

Share
Dr. Thomas Doyle
128 Doctors shared insights

Plague (Overview)

A rare infectious disease caused by a bacteria that is transmitted via flea bite. Symptoms of bubonic plague include fever, chills, headache, muscle pains, and the appearance of a large, painful lymph node.


1

1
How is plague treated?

How is plague treated?

Antibiotics, hospital: Patients with suspected plague are put in strict isolation units and treatment is started with antibiotics such as gentamicin, streptomycin, doxycycline, tetracyline, Septra, (sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim) ciprofloxacin, or chloramphenicol. With treatment, the death rate drops from about 50% to about 15% (the majority of the cases are bubonic plague). Pneumonic plague is fatal if treatment is not started in 24 hours. ...Read more

Dr. Thomas Doyle
128 Doctors shared insights

Plague (Overview)

A rare infectious disease caused by a bacteria that is transmitted via flea bite. Symptoms of bubonic plague include fever, chills, headache, muscle pains, and the appearance of a large, painful lymph node.


2

2
How does pneumonic plague start?

How does pneumonic plague start?

Bubonic plague: Bubonic plague is caused by bacteria Yersinia pestis also known as Pasteurela pestis, it results from bite of a infected flea which are often found on rodents such as rats and mouse, and seek out other prey when rodent dies. It is transmitted to human host by bite, it rapidly spreads to the lymph nodes and multiply. ...Read more

4

4
What are the tests for plague?

What are the tests for plague?

Plague: The bacteria is easily cultured but in plague endemic areas bubonic disease with its extremely painful bubo (lymph node) is classic. ...Read more

5

5
What causes plague to form on the tooth/gum?

What causes plague to form on the tooth/gum?

Living..: Living causes plaque (not plague) to form on teeth and in you mouth. It comes from food, air water, saliva and just about anything. It forms immediately after you've brush your teeth. It is a way of life, but the main thing you don't want the stuff to be on your teeth for a long period of time. Basically...Brush and floss regularly and even if you have a little plaque. No big deal. ...Read more

6

6
What are different ways to treat pneumonic plague?

What are different ways to treat pneumonic plague?

Antibiotics and luck: Pneumonic plague is thought to be uniformly fatal. Antibiotics can stop the progression to death, but must be given within 24 hours of first symptoms. The "streptomycin class", tetracyclines, and others can be effective. Antibiotic treatment can protect people who have had direct, close contact with infected patients. Wearing a well fit mask is critical to prevent spread. ...Read more

7

7
How effective is the treatment for the plague?

How effective is the treatment for the plague?

Plague: The plague - bubonic plague - is caused by a particular bacteria. When it wiped out populations it was because fleas spread it and there were no antibiotics at the time. Now there are classes of antibiotics that kill the yersinia bacteria that causes it. ...Read more

8

8
I have the plague, what is my chances of survival without treatment?

I have the plague, what is my chances of survival without treatment?

50/50 if systemic: Without treatment you're at the mercy of your immune system. If very strong against agents like the plague you may survive. But its 50/50 if the disease is systemic (as opposed to dermal alone). Dermal plague has much better survival numbers. Get eval and treatment from your PCP or an infectious disease specialist. ...Read more

10

10
What's the best treatment to get rid of plague?

What's the best treatment to get rid of plague?

Antibiotics: Bubonic and/or pneumonic plague, which is caused by the bacterium Yersinia pestis, which lives in the fleas of rodents. The flees bite people and transmit the disease. This is the "black death" of the middle ages. The treatment for the disease is various antibiotics including streptomycin, ciprofloxicin, Doxycycline and others. It often occurs in outbreaks and can be fatal if not treated. ...Read more

11

11
Who is at risk for getting plague?

Anyone in area: Of poor hygiene/sanitation; where rats congregate, as it is the flea from the rat that transmits the yersinia pestis to humans.

Low income areas; those damaged by natural or man-made disasters. ...Read more

Emily Lu Dr. Lu
3 doctors agreed:
12

12
What is done to prevent the spread of black plague?

Emily Lu Dr. Lu
3 doctors agreed:
What is done to prevent the spread of black plague?

Good sanitation: In general, plague is prevented by eliminating rodents and fleas, especially in the areas where plague is known to be endemic (like the western United States). Antibiotic prophylaxis (prevention) can be considered for people who are exposed to potentially-infected rodents or fleas. ...Read more

13

13
What should I do to avoid the pneumonic plague?

Pneumonic plague: Can be acquired two days: by being coughed upon by someone who has pneumonic plague (this is called primary) or by bloodstream spread from the bubonic focus to the lung. Avoidance consists of not being in areas endemic for Y. pestis. ...Read more

14

14
How is plague treated?

Antibiotics, hospital: Patients with suspected plague are put in strict isolation units and treatment is started with antibiotics such as gentamicin, streptomycin, doxycycline, tetracyline, Septra, (sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim) ciprofloxacin, or chloramphenicol. With treatment, the death rate drops from about 50% to about 15% (the majority of the cases are bubonic plague). Pneumonic plague is fatal if treatment is not started in 24 hours. ...Read more

15

15
How do people get plague?

Bites or sick people: The plague is usually bubonic (one catches it from being bit by infected fleas or rodents, and the bacteria infects one's lymph nodes) or pneumonic (one catches it by breathing infected moisture droplets exhaled, sneezed, or coughed out by an infected person or animal, and the bacteria infects one's lungs). Without treatment, pneumonic plague is fatal. ...Read more

16

16
How is plague transmitted?

How is plague transmitted?

Flea bites: In areas of poor hygiene/sanitation; where rats congregate, as it is the flea from the rat that transmits the yersinia pestis to humans.

Low income areas; those damaged by natural or man-made disasters. ...Read more

17

17
Where is plague most common?

Outside of US: Africa, asia, south america. It is rare in europe and the us/canada. ...Read more

18

18
Can I still catch the plague?

Yes; unlikely in US: In the U.S., there are about 10-15 cases of plague reported each year. The cases are usually from Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, and Arizona. Throughout the world, there are 1000-3000 cases of plague reported each year, mainly from Africa, southern Asia, and South America (plus there are an unknown number of unreported cases). ...Read more

19

19
What are the tests for plague?

Plague: The bacteria is easily cultured but in plague endemic areas bubonic disease with its extremely painful bubo (lymph node) is classic. ...Read more