Black Death killed 50 million people in 14th century,Now called Bubonic plague is diagnosed in China
Updated: Jul 7
Deadlier than Coronavirus, Bubonic Plague is also known as Black Death wiped out more than 50 Million people in 14th Century. Now China showed signs of the return of this Deadliest pandemic in human history.
Bubonic plague is diagnosed in China
Scanning electron microphotograph depicting a mass of Yersinia pestis bacteria (the cause of bubbonic plague) in the foregut of the flea vector.Rocky Mountain Laboratories, NIAID, NIH
A herdsman in Inner Mongolia was confirmed to be infected with bubonic plague, Chinese health officials said, a reminder of how even as the world battles a pandemic caused by a novel virus, old threats remain.
The Bayannur city health commission said the plague was diagnosed in the herdsman Sunday, and he was in stable condition undergoing treatment at a hospital.
The commission also issued a third-level alert, the second lowest in a 4-level system, warning people against hunting, eating or transporting potentially infected animals, particularly marmots, and to report any dead or diseased rodents.
The city government said it had put in place plague-prevention measures that would remain in force for the rest of the year.
The disease, which caused the Black Death in the Middle Ages, is caused by the Yersinia pestis bacterium and is transmitted by fleas that become infected by rodents. In Inner Mongolia, the host is often marmots that live in rural areas.
In November, Beijing officials said 2 people from Inner Mongolia were found to have pneumonic plague, another form of plague caused by the same bacterium. Pneumonic plague is the only form that can be transmitted person to person, through respiratory droplets.
Victims' teeth reveal how the Black Death that killed 200million people spread from Russia to Europe Photo Source: https://www.newsgroove.co.uk/victims-teeth-reveal-how-the-black-death-that-killed-200million-people-spread-from-russia-to-europe/
If not treated, pneumonic plague is invariably fatal, while bubonic plague is fatal in about 30-60 percent of untreated cases, the World Health Organization says. Antibiotics can cure the disease if delivered early.
The neighboring country of Mongolia also announced Monday that it had lifted restrictions in Khovd Province after 2 cases of bubonic plague linked to the consumption of marmot meat were reported a week ago. Health officials said the patients’ conditions had improved, the Ikon.mn news site reported.
Plague cases are found in limited numbers across much of the world. In the United States, about seven cases, usually the bubonic form, are reported on average each year, most often in rural areas of western states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. c.2020 The New York Times Company
Suspected case of bubonic plague in China's Inner Mongolia
Authorities in the Chinese region of Inner Mongolia are on high alert after a suspected case of bubonic plague, the disease that caused the Black Death pandemic, was reported Sunday.
The case was discovered in the city of Bayannur, located northwest of Beijing, according to state-run Xinhua news agency. A hospital alerted municipal authorities of the patient's case on Saturday. By Sunday, local authorities had issued a citywide Level 3 warning for plague prevention, the second lowest in a four-level system. The warning will stay in place until the end of the year, according to Xinhua.
Plague, caused by bacteria and transmitted through flea bites and infected animals, is one of the deadliest bacterial infections in human history. During the Black Death in the Middle Ages, it killed an estimated 50 million people in Europe. Modern antibiotics can prevent complications and death if administered quickly enough.
Bubonic plague, which is one of plague's three forms, causes painful, swollen lymph nodes, as well as fever, chills, and coughing.
Bayannur health authorities are now urging people to take extra precautions to minimize the risk of human-to-human transmission, and to avoid hunting or eating animals that could cause infection.
"At present, there is a risk of a human plague epidemic spreading in this city. The public should improve its self-protection awareness and ability, and report abnormal health conditions promptly," the local health authority said, according to state-run newspaper China Daily.
Bayannur authorities warned the public to report findings of dead or sick marmots -- a type of large ground squirrel that is eaten in some parts of China and the neighboring country Mongolia, and which have historically caused plague outbreaks in the region.
The Black Death: The Greatest Catastrophe Ever
Ole J. Benedictow describes how he calculated that the Black Death killed 50 million people in the 14th century, or 60 per cent of Europe’s entire population.