What is Scrub Typhus? How 6 people died in Odisha due to deadly infection, understand in 10 points

  1. Scrub typhus, also known as bush typhus, is a disease caused by the bacteria Orientia tsutsugamushi.
  2. Scrub typhus is spread between people through the bites of infected fleas. Flea is a small insect that feeds on the blood of animals and feeds on the skin of animals or humans. Which is seen on the bodies of animals like dogs, cows, buffaloes, rabbits and squirrels.
  3. Fleas are usually found in warm, humid areas with dense vegetation – forests, bushes and grasslands.
  4. In their larval stage, these insects transmit the infection to rats, mites and other small animals, thereby transmitting it to humans.
  5. It may take about 10 to 12 days for symptoms of scrub typhus to appear after the bite of an infected mite. A red or pink lesion appears at the site of the mite bite.
  6. Common symptoms of the disease include headache, fever, chills, dry cough and body aches as well as swollen lymph glands. A week after infection, pinkish rashes may appear on the skin.
  7. The fever usually subsides in two weeks, but may last for three or four weeks.
    Infection can cause abnormalities in the heart, lungs and blood, which can lead to impaired heart function and circulatory failure. Delay in treatment can also lead to death. Infection can be easily diagnosed through ELISA test.
  8. There is no vaccine available to prevent scrub typhus. For this reason, the best possible way to reduce the risk of infection is to distance yourself from infected people and animals.
  9. Infestation can be prevented by rodent control, sanitation, caution when handling pets, and applying mite repellent to exposed skin when outdoors (especially in grassy or wooded areas).

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