Why in News?
Recently, a rare disease called Brucellosis, caused by bacteria capable of infecting both animals and humans, afflicted a young girl hailing from Kerala.
Seven-Year-Old Student in Kollam Tests Positive for Brucellosis, a Life-Threatening Bacterial Infection
In Kadakkal, Kollam, a seven-year-old student has been diagnosed with Brucellosis, a bacterial infection that can be transmitted from animals to humans. The girl was admitted to the hospital after experiencing severe symptoms such as high fever, elevated platelet count, and facial swelling. Subsequent tests confirmed the presence of the bacterial infection.
What is Brucellosis?
- Brucellosis is a bacterial infection that can be transmitted from animals to humans, which typically occurs when individuals consume raw or unpasteurized dairy products. Alternatively, the bacteria responsible for brucellosis can be spread through the air or direct contact with infected animals.
- Common symptoms of brucellosis include fever, joint pain, and fatigue. Although antibiotics are generally effective in treating the infection, the treatment duration can range from several weeks to months, and recurrence is possible. Currently, there is no available human vaccine to effectively prevent brucellosis.
- Brucellosis has a significant global impact, affecting hundreds of thousands of individuals and animals. Preventive measures such as avoiding raw dairy products and taking precautions when handling animals or working in a laboratory can help mitigate the risk of contracting brucellosis.
Symptoms of Brucellosis
The symptoms of brucellosis can manifest at any time ranging from a few days to several months following the initial infection. These signs and symptoms bear resemblance to those of the flu and consist of
- Decreased appetite
- Pain in the joints, muscles, and back
Brucellosis symptoms may intermittently vanish for weeks or months before resurfacing. Some individuals develop chronic brucellosis, enduring symptoms for years, even after receiving treatment. Persistent signs and symptoms may encompass
- Repeated episodes of fever
- Inflammation of the inner lining of the heart chambers (endocarditis)
- Inflammation of the joints (arthritis)
- Inflammation of the spinal bones (spondylitis)
- Arthritis affecting the joints connecting the spine and pelvis (sacroiliitis)
What measures can be taken to avoid contracting Brucellosis?
Brucellosis can be avoided by implementing the following precautions
- Refrain from consuming or using unpasteurized dairy products.
- When working in the animal processing industry, wear protective rubber gloves.
- In case of contact with an animal infected with Brucella, notify your healthcare provider, irrespective of experiencing symptoms.
Key takeaways for competitive examinations
- Brucellosis was first discovered in the 1850s in: Malta,Europe
- Chief Minister of Kerala: Pinarayi Vijayan