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A resident of the Boguchansky district, Krasnoyarsk Territory, in central Russia has been diagnosed with the bacterial infection, tularemia.

Image/Gorman Lewis, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

This is the first time in 10 years that such a diagnosis has been made in the region.

The infection occurred “through contact with raw hare meat,” said Dmitry Goryaev , chief sanitary doctor of the region .

The last case of tularemia infection was registered in the region in 2012. Then a 55-year-old resident of the Abansky district fell ill, who was butchering the carcass of a muskrat.

Tularemia is a rare infection caused by the bacteria Francisella tularensis that spreads through insect bites, with deer flies and ticks being the primary vectors in New Mexico. It can also be spread through handling infected animal tissues in situations such as hunting, trapping and skinning of rabbits or other rodents or during the clean-up of rodent carcasses while gardening.

Tularemia symptoms in people may include sudden fever, chills, headaches, diarrhea, muscles aches and joint pain. Other symptoms may include swollen and painful lymph glands especially in the anatomical region where the bacteria first gained entry into the body.

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