Pneumonic Plague Research Paper

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“Ring around the rosie. Pockets full of posies. Ashes, ashes, we all fall down!” We have all sang this song as children playing with our friends. However, there is a morbid story behind this seemingly innocent song. The words refer to an epidemic known as the the Black Plague, which began spread through Europe in the year 1347. With the plague came fear and death. It is estimated that twenty-five million people were killed during the outbreak. The plague was spread by fleas who had fed on animals infected with a bacteria called Yersinia pestis. It is thought that fleas were mostly from black rats and cats, however, the bacteria may also be carried by squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, and prairie dogs. The bacteria could also be spread by coming…show more content…
This sickness starts out as flu-like symptoms, but quickly become more serious. Those infected would eventually develop large, blue sores called buboes. Buboes can be located near the groin, armpit, neck, or can very rarely be internal. Over time, victims would develop pneumonic plague, which is an advanced form of the bubonic plague. The pneumonic plague affects the lungs and was usually what killed those who contracted the plague. This type of plague is the most infectious and the most deadly. The third and final plague is the septicemic plague. In this form, the bacteria multiplies in the blood, causing gangrene, which is blood clots in the fingers and toes, and shock. The plague has also been associated with meningitis, or swelling of the brain and spinal…show more content…
The Spanish influenza outbreak in 1918 killed about 50 million people. Though it was small in scale compared to the Black Death, but it caused just as much panic. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which causes AIDS, has become an epidemic in recent years. Interestingly enough, there is a possible relation between HIV and the plague. Scientists have found a genetic mutation in people who have ancestors who contracted the plague during the outbreak in the 1440s and survived. This genetic mutation gives people immunity to the HIV virus. Ebola is also a concerning virus. It’s recent outbreak in Africa killed many people and caused other countries to put up travel precautions. Microorganism is not the only threat to our species. Diseases like cancer, which is the mutation of cells in the human body, has also been proven extremely deadly. It seems that the human race’s greatest weakness will always be our
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