MDALLEGA-L ArchivesArchiver > MDALLEGA > 2006-08 > 1155625964
From: ~~C <>
Subject: Diptheria and other contagious diseases.
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2006 00:12:44 -0700 (PDT)
Diphtheria is an acute bacterial disease caused by toxigenic strains of Corynebacterium diphtheriae and occasionally C. ulcerans. It is transmitted through respiratory droplets and personal contact. Diphtheria affects the mucous membranes of the respiratory tract (respiratory diphtheria), the skin (cutaneous diphtheria), and occasionally other sites (eyes, nose, or vagina).
Years ago, diphtheria was a widespread and greatly feared disease. Through the 1920's it struck about 150,000 people a year, and killed about 15,000 of them. Since then, these figures have dropped considerably, thanks to parents who have gotten their children immunized against this terrible disease. There were only 918 cases in 1960, 435 in 1970, and 128 in 1976. Today, only a few cases occur each year. Diphtheria is caused by a germ that lives in the mouth, throat, and nose of an infected person. It is easily passed to others through coughing or sneezing.
Early symptoms of diphtheria are a sore throat, a slight fever, and chills. Usually, the disease develops in the throat. It can make it hard to swallow and even cause the patient to suffocate. Some people may be infected but not appear ill. They can also spread the infection. If diphtheria is not properly treated, or not treated in time, the bacteria may produce a powerful poison. This poison can spread throughout the body causing serious complications such as heart failure or paralysis. About 1 person in 10 who gets diphtheria dies from it.
This is another disease that was more prevalent then than it is now.
Pertussis, caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis, is a highly communicable respiratory illness characterized by prolonged paroxysmal coughing. Persons in all age groups can be infected. Complications and deaths from pertussis are most common among unvaccinated infants.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries three leading causes of death were pneumonia, tuberculosis (TB), and diarrhea and enteritis, which (together with diphtheria) caused one third of all deaths. Lots of other things were fatal like the influenza (flu) epidemic in 1918
Other diseases that were prevalent to some degree:
Smallpox - even though vaccines were available from the 1850s outbreaks continued until the mid 1900s.
Typhiod Fever - an epidemic occurred in 1890 - 1892 was eliminated by the chlorination of water.
Scarlet Fever - I forgot this one earlier - it is also caused from the streptococcus strain that causes strep throat and rheumatic fever. It is characterized by the red rash mentionedd in the other post.
Tuberculosis - accounted fo over 10% of the annual death toll and was the last of the major contagious diseaases to be controlled. It has been making a small comeback of late though not nearly the way it had been.
It's realy very simple, your life is now.
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