An anthrax outbreak has been reported in northwest China’s Shaanxi province that has affected both animals and people, according to a government press release (computer translated).
Government officials say there have reports of anthrax in horses in three villages and 11 suspected human cases of the bacterial disease. According to the report, the patients are stable and are being treated at the hospital.
15 large livestock have died due to anthrax.
Anthrax is a serious infectious disease caused by gram-positive, rod-shaped bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax can be found naturally in soil and commonly affects domestic and wild animals around the world. Although it is rare, people can get sick with anthrax if they come in contact with infected animals or contaminated animal products
Cutaneous anthrax occurs when the spore (or possibly the bacterium) enters a cut or abrasion on the skin. It starts out as a raised bump that looks like an insect bite. It then develops into a blackened lesion called an eschar that may form a scab. Lymph glands in the area may swell plus edema may be present. This form of anthrax responds well to antibiotics. If untreated, deaths can occur if the infection goes systemic. 95% of cases of anthrax are cutaneous.