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Eight patients are currently being treated for leptospirosis at the Lviv Regional Infectious Disease Hospital, according to a media report. Most of the patients are from Stryi district, Drohobych, Morshyn, hospital officials say.

Image/Robert Herriman

One patient is in serious condition being treated in intensive care.

This summer, according to Tamila Aleksanyan, head of the 4th diagnostic department of the hospital, the number of patients diagnosed with leptospirosis increased significantly. In the hospital, there are also those in whom this diagnosis has not yet been confirmed, but there is a suspicion of leptospirosis.

According to the US CDC, Leptospirosis is a disease caused by bacteria. Infected animals spread the bacteria through their urine (pee). When infected animals pee, the bacteria get into the water or soil and can live there for weeks to months.

You can be infected if you touch fresh water, soil, or other objects contaminated with infected animal urine. The most common ways to get infected is urine or contaminated water getting in your eyes, nose, mouth, or broken skin (such as a cut or scratch). You can also get infected by eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated water.

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Some people with leptospirosis do not have any symptoms. When symptoms occur, they can include fever, headache, chills, muscle aches, vomiting, jaundice (yellow eyes and skin), red eyes, stomach pain, diarrhea, and sometimes a rash. Without proper treatment with antibiotics, people with leptospirosis may develop serious problems with their kidneys, liver, or lining of the brain and spinal cord (meningitis). In some cases, leptospirosis can cause death.