Top
30
Doctor insights on: Smallpox

Share
Dr. Heidi Fowler
136 Doctors shared insights

Smallpox (Overview)

An infectious disease caused by viruses Variola Major and Variola Minor that was a significant cause of death before being eradicated in 1979.


1

1
How does smallpox spread?

How does smallpox spread?

Person to person: Contact with infectious material from an person with smallpox is how this was passed. There are no insects or animals that spread the germ. Since there has been no cases since 1977, we only hear about this from people worried it may resurface as a bioterror weapon. ...Read more

Dr. Heidi Fowler
136 Doctors shared insights

Smallpox (Overview)

An infectious disease caused by viruses Variola Major and Variola Minor that was a significant cause of death before being eradicated in 1979.


2

2
Are there any medications that can treat smallpox symptoms?

Are there any medications that can treat smallpox symptoms?

See below: No cure for smallpox exists. Treatment would focus on relieving symptoms and keeping the person from becoming dehydrated. Antibiotics may be prescribed if the person also develops a bacterial infection in the lungs or on the skin. ...Read more

3

3
How did they do the eradication of smallpox?

Circles of vaccine: The virus is never asymptomatic and has no animal or insect hosts and the vaccine is heat stable, not needing a cold chain. At the end, as each case in asia or africa was discovered, all of the people around the index case were immunized. ...Read more

4

4
What are the tests for smallpox?

What are the tests for smallpox?

None: Smallpox was eradicated in 1979. There were non-specific blood tests. The diagnosis was made based on the rash and the clinical picture as well as the knowledge of an outbreak. ...Read more

5

5
How would I know if I had caught smallpox?

Dreadfull illness: Adults with smallpox were dreadfully ill within days, bedridden with high fever and loss of energy. Since no wild cases have occurred in the US since 1949 and worldwide since 1977 you are not likely to catch this in your lifetime. See the CDC website for specific details. Www. Bt.cdc. Gov/agent/smallpox/index. Asp. ...Read more

6

6
What is the cause of smallpox?

Variola Virus: Smallpox is caused by the variola virus, which is a large dna virus that is rather contagious and easily transmissible from humans to humans. ...Read more

7

7
How is smallpox treated?

Smallpox tx.: A Smallpox patient should be isolated in a negative-pressure room until all scabs have fallen off. Provide intravenous or oral hydration wi electrolyte/ fluid monitoring. The person should be vaccinated as soon as possible after exposure. Wound care is important. Use ventilatory support if required. Although there is no specific medication for Smallpox, cidofovir (antiviral) amy be helpful. > ...Read more

8

8
What is the best treatment for smallpox?

Smallpox: The WHO announced World-wide eradication of Smallpox on May 8 1980. Smallpox has no animal reservoirs. So Smallpox would not return naturally. A Smallpox patient should be isolated in a negative-pressure room until all scabs have fallen off. Provide intravenous or oral hydration wi electrolyte/ fluid monitoring. The person should be vaccinated as soon as possible after exposure. Wound care is > ...Read more

9

9
How can you cure smallpox?

Smallpox: The WHO announced World-wide eradication of Smallpox on May 8 1980. Smallpox has no animal reservoirs. So Smallpox would not return naturally. A Smallpox patient should be isolated in a negative-pressure room until all scabs have fallen off. Provide intravenous or oral hydration wi electrolyte/ fluid monitoring. The person should be vaccinated as soon as possible after exposure. Wound care is ...Read more

10

10
Small pox vaccine scar even though born in the 90's (and 89), why is this and can I get rid of it?

Small pox vaccine scar even though born in the 90's (and 89), why is this and can I get rid of it?

The way it was given: Small Pox vaccine was not given with hypoderm needle.
We used a bifurcate needle dip in vaccine and puncture the skin superficially a number of times.
If vaccine is successful a red and itchy bump appears at the site of vaccination in3to4days and in first week it becomes a large blisterand begins to drain. It begins to dry up in second week and scabs. The scab falls in 3rd week and leaves ugly scar ...Read more

11

11
If my child gets smallpox what is the chance for survival?

Depends: The case fatality rate back 30+ years ago when smallpox was last seen was around 30%. Some individuals had more dramatic presentations with higher fatality rates & children & people >30 were more likely to die. Given that a return of smallpox is unlikely, I would not spend a lot of time worrying about it. ...Read more

12

12
Hello doctors, can vaccines be rendered useless like antibiotics if they are overused. E.g if a new strain of smallpox was?

Hello doctors, can vaccines be rendered useless like antibiotics if they are overused. E.g if a new strain of smallpox was?

Not Exactly: It is not over-vaccination that causes vaccine resistance so much as mutation of the organism, whether a virus or bacteria. Antibiotic resistance occurs when resistant organisms pass genetic information to non-resistant organisms. This is more likely to happen after someone has been exposed to an antibiotic that was not appropriate for the condition, the wrong antibiotic, or the wrong duration. ...Read more

13

13
Should I be worried about a smallpox outbreak?

NO!: Small pox has been totally eradicated from the world. The virus may (?) exist in research setting but an outbreak is impossible. ...Read more

14

14
Can I get smallpox?

No: Small pox has been eliminated from any possible exposure. There are two deposits of the virus left: one in the CDC deep freeze in Atlanta and one in a similar place in Russia. The only way you could get this disease would be by an act of terrorism which is very unlikely. ...Read more

15

15
Is smallpox serious?

Yes and no: It's extremely serious if you get it. But since the disease has been eradicated frm the planet, it 's not a serious concern. ...Read more

16

16
How can I get smallpox?

With great: Difficulty. Smallpox was eradicated in 1980.
The exception was stocks of the virus maintained in liquid nitrogen at one lab in atlanta, georgia and one lab in moscow. Both countries agreed along with the world health organization that they would destroy their remaining stocks. ...Read more

17

17
How is smallpox treated?

Smallpox tx.: A Smallpox patient should be isolated in a negative-pressure room until all scabs have fallen off. Provide intravenous or oral hydration wi electrolyte/ fluid monitoring. The person should be vaccinated as soon as possible after exposure. Wound care is important. Use ventilatory support if required. Although there is no specific medication for Smallpox, cidofovir (antiviral) amy be helpful. > ...Read more

18

18
How does smallpox spread?

Person to person: Contact with infectious material from an person with smallpox is how this was passed. There are no insects or animals that spread the germ. Since there has been no cases since 1977, we only hear about this from people worried it may resurface as a bioterror weapon. ...Read more

19

19
How do you catch smallpox?

Smallpox: Human to Human transmission. The WHO announced World-wide eradication of Smallpox on May 8 1980. Smallpox has no animal reservoirs. So Smallpox would not return naturally. ...Read more

20

20
How can you cure smallpox?

Smallpox: The WHO announced World-wide eradication of Smallpox on May 8 1980. Smallpox has no animal reservoirs. So Smallpox would not return naturally. A Smallpox patient should be isolated in a negative-pressure room until all scabs have fallen off. Provide intravenous or oral hydration wi electrolyte/ fluid monitoring. The person should be vaccinated as soon as possible after exposure. Wound care is ...Read more

21

21
How is smallpox transmitted?

Inhaling the virus: Smallpox is highly contagious. In most cases, people get smallpox by inhaling droplets of saliva, which are full of virus, during face-to-face contact with an infected person. ...Read more

22

22
What is the cause of smallpox?

Variola Virus: Smallpox is caused by the variola virus, which is a large dna virus that is rather contagious and easily transmissible from humans to humans. ...Read more

23

23
Was smallpox truly eradicated?

Smallpox: All natural sources of smallpox have been eradicated. The WHO announced World-wide eradication of Smallpox on May 8 1980. Smallpox has no animal reservoirs. So Smallpox would not return naturally. ...Read more

24

24
What is the vector for smallpox?

Humans: Of our major plague like illnesses, smallpox is somewhat unique in having no animal or insect carrier. Exposure to infective material from humans was the only known form of transmission. This aided eradication as immunized health providers created a "wall" around active cases. The WHO offered a bounty for reporting any cases as the illness wound down & none were found in the wild after 1977. ...Read more

25

25
Where does smallpox still exist?

Smallpox: The WHO announced World-wide eradication of Smallpox on May 8 1980. There may still be some quantities of smallpox in limited research labs but it no longer occurs naturally. ...Read more

26

26
What are the tests for smallpox?

None: Smallpox was eradicated in 1979. There were non-specific blood tests. The diagnosis was made based on the rash and the clinical picture as well as the knowledge of an outbreak. ...Read more

27

27
How many forms of smallpox exist?

Two forms of smallpo: Historically there have been two forms of the disease. Variola major was the main form of the disease that caused all sorts of medical problems. Variola minor was much less common, much less severe, and only about 1% of all smallpox infections. There hasn't been a smallpox infection in the world since 1978, so you are unlikely to see either of these viruses. ...Read more

28

28
Is it possible to die from smallpox?

Currently there is: No Smallpox in nature. It is considered an eradicated disease. When it occurred, it was deadly. Smallpox from Variola Minor had a death rate of 1% or less. 90% of unvaccinated smallpox cases fell under the category of “ordinary Smallpox”. The overall fatality rate for Smallpox was 30%. Malignant (AKA flat) Smallpox made up 5 to 10% of cases, was usually fatal & mostly effected children. ...Read more

29

29
Is it possible that smallpox comes back?

Agree with Dr. Raff: It won't come back naturally as it has been eradicated. The American public has not received routine smallpox vaccinations since 1972. All natural sources of smallpox have been eradicated. According to the CDC, “The U.S. government has enough vaccine to vaccinate every person in the United States in the event of a smallpox emergency.” This is part of Emergency Prepared & Response. ...Read more

30

30
Has there been a resurgence of smallpox?

Has there been a resurgence of smallpox?

No: The reason that the vaccine was put back into production was due to threat of bioterrorism after 9/11. ...Read more