Yersinia Pestis: The Facts And Treatments Of The Black Death

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Black Death
-The bacterial disease that atrophied Europe between 1347-1351, taking an equitably greater amount of life than any other known epidemic or war up to that point. The Black Death is broadly thought to have been the result of infection by the bacterium Yersinia pestis.
5 Facts:
• Many doctors believed that bad smells could force out the plague. Therefore, treatments for the disease included applying feces and urine, and other substances that were much more likely to spread disease than to cure it.
• Y. Pestis utilized the flea by blocking its digestive tract. The flea tries constantly to feed, but the blockage causes it to vomit bacilli into its host. When the host perishes, the flea and its offspring pursue a fresh host, infesting
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pestis causes three varieties of plague: bubonic plague, caused by bites from infected fleas, in which the bacteria moves to lymph nodes and quickly multiplies, forming growths, or buboes; pneumonic plague, a lung infection that causes its victim to cough blood and spread the bacteria from person to person; and septic emic plague, a blood infection that is almost always fatal.

• Nearly no one thought the omnipresent rodents and fleas could be responsible.

• The efforts to find treatments for the pestilence started the momentum toward development of the scientific method and the changes in thinking that led to the Renaissance

• Plague continues to survive in the modern world, with Y. pestis foci in Asia, Russia, the American Southwest.(“41 Interesting Facts”.)

The Black Death or Bubonic Plague completely devastated millions of human lives during the two horrendous years it was prevalent in England. Roughly 50% of England’s population was eradicated due to the septicity. This great upsurge in bereavements brought many changes through the period 1348 to 1350. Aside from the social and economic calamity that was brought about by the plague, the biological aspects are equally frightening. ("41 Interesting Facts...")
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At some point, depending on the individual, body temperature will suddenly spike to about 104 degrees Fahrenheit, a high fever. There are 3 types of plague that are most prevalent , the bubonic, pneumonic, and septic plague. The Bubonic Plague targets the lymphatic system, enlarging the lymph nodes, which, in turn, cause open sores. This is the most common form of infection. The septic plague or Black Plague, as it is known, is differentiated by its tendency to utilize the blood stream. Breeding occurs in capillaries, eventually bursting them. The pooled blood leads to black patches seen through the skin to the sub-dermal level. Pneumonic plague does not need a flea as a vector to transmit the infection and is therefore, the most common form of transmission on a general scale, as it is airborne in close quarters. The pneumonic plague is a daunting mimic of the more common, pneumonia, which causes a fever and a fluid buildup in the lungs which causes the infected to cough and hack (potentially infecting others) and eventually drown in their own bodily fluids. These three forms of infection can occur separately, and in extreme cases, all at once, in which case, the individual has very little chance of survival. ("41 Interesting

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