• Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

Bubonic Plague Resurfaces in Oregon: What You Need to Know and How to Protect Yourself


Feb 12, 2024
First human case of bubonic plague confirmed in Oregon by health officials since 2015

In recent news, health officials in Oregon have announced the state’s first case of bubonic plague since 2015. The resident, believed to have been infected by their cat, has received treatment and is now recovering. All close contacts of the resident and their pet have also been contacted and provided medication to prevent illness.

Despite the risk posed by this case, officials are reassuring the community that there is little danger to it since the case was identified and treated early on. There have been no additional cases of plague reported during the communicable disease investigation. It’s important to note that if not diagnosed early, the bubonic plague can progress to more severe forms such as septicemic plague (a bloodstream infection) or pneumonic plague (a lung infection).

The last human case of plague in Oregon was reported in 2015, but humans typically begin to show symptoms within two to eight days of exposure. Symptoms include a sudden onset of fever, nausea, weakness, chills, muscle aches, and visibly swollen lymph nodes called buboes. Humans can be infected through bites or contact with infected fleas or animals. In Central Oregon, officials are warning residents to avoid contact with rodents and fleas, including sick or dead ones, in order to prevent the spread of the disease.

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