Tag Archives | Epidemics

“Epidemic Of Sleep” Reported In Village In Kazakhstan

sleepingIs it mass hysteria? A mysterious epidemic that could grind society to a halt? Or perhaps a logical response to the complexities of modern life? Via Brazil Weird News:

An “Epidemic of Sleep” is how doctors are calling a strange disease that spread among the villagers of Kalachi, Akmola region, Kazakhstan.

Local TV channel KTK reported that, even now, nothing is known about the cause of the disorder. It was found that the affected people are not close nor had any fortuitous contact with each other.

The complaints relate symptoms such as weakness, fainting, even hallucinations. All victims begin to feel an irresistible desire to sleep. Village resident Hope Yakimova said: “People are falling sleeping suddenly, anywhere, standing or sitting.”

Radiation levels and samples of air, water, and soil were measured across town. The blood of the victims was also analyzed seeking traces of heavy metals and other toxic substances.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

CDC Warns ‘We Will Soon Be in a Post-Antibiotic Era’

antibiotic-resistantFor all our technology, will we end up going back to the Dark Ages? Wired Science writes:

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has just published a first-of-its-kind assessment of the threat from antibiotic-resistant organisms, outlining urgent steps that need to be taken.

The agency’s conservative assessment of the problem:

Each year, in the U.S., 2,049,442 illnesses caused by bacteria and fungi that are resistant to at least some classes of antibiotics; Each year, out of those illnesses, 23,000 deaths.

“If we are not careful, we will soon be in a post-antibiotic era,” Dr. Tom Frieden, the CDC’s director, said in a media briefing. “And for some patients and for some microbes, we are already there.”

Out of that matrix, their top three “urgent” threats:

Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae or CRE, a set of ICU germs that are resistant to almost all antibiotics: 600 deaths per year; Antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea, which currently responds to only one drug: 246,000 infections per year; Clostridium difficile, 14,000 deaths.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

Anti-Vax Megachurch Unleashes Measles Outbreak In Texas

Anti-Vax Megachurch

The church is part of the empire of megapastor Kenneth Copeland, who advocates faith healing and a connection between vaccines and autism. The Dallas Morning News reports that the church is relenting and members are receiving vaccinations:

Tarrant County health officials have linked 11 measles cases to a megachurch near Eagle Mountain Lake.

Eagle Mountain International Church officials confirmed Tuesday that a person who was exposed to the infectious disease while on a mission trip to Indonesia had visited their church, about 50 miles northwest of Dallas. “[The man] shook hands,” Robert Hayes, the church’s risk manager, said. “He gave a number of people a big hug.”

Those infected range in age from 4 months to 44 years. It took time to narrow the source because measles symptoms don’t surface right away, officials said.

Though the disease is rare in the U.S., measles is so contagious that it infects 90 percent of those who are not immune and come into contact with an infected person.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

U.K. Experts Warn Of Possible Antibiotic Apocalypse

Is Rise of the Bacteria a legit doomsday possibility? Via the BBC:

The rise in drug resistant infections is comparable to the threat of global warming, according to the chief medical officer for England. She told a committee of MPs that bacteria were becoming resistant to current drugs and there were few antibiotics to replace them. Going for a routine operation could become deadly due to the threat of infection.

Antibiotics have been one of the greatest success stories in medicine. However, bacteria are a rapidly adapting…MRSA is one of the most feared words in hospitals wards and there are growing reports of resistance in strains of E. coli, tuberculosis and gonorrhea.

The World Health Organization has warned the world is heading for a “post-antibiotic era” unless action is taken. It paints a future in which “many common infections will no longer have a cure and, once again, kill unabated”.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

Possible Cover-Up of Dangerous West Nile Virus Mutation?

Picture: CDC (PD)

Most people who contract the mosquito-borne pathogen West Nile virus are asymptomatic, and even those who do get sick usually experience flu-like symptoms that resolve on their own. In a small percentage of those infected, the symptoms can be much worse: swelling of the brain and permanent neurological damage among them. Now, the Washington Post reports there are signs that the virus could be getting worse and evidence of a possible cover-up in the form of a “recalled” email:

Last month, Leis asked a Food and Drug Administration scientist who studies the genetics of the virus whether a new, more virulent strain was circulating.

“You are absolutely right . . . that new genetic variants of WNV might have appeared this year,” the scientist replied in an Oct. 23 e-mail obtained by The Washington Post. The scientist continued that “it is not easy to correlate” the new mutations with any specific type of brain damage.

Read the rest

Continue Reading

UK Man Diagnosed with “Congo Fever” Dies

Picture: CDC (PD)

A 38-year old British man who was diagnosed with Crimean-Congo Viral Hemorrhagic Fever, commonly referred to as Congo Fever, has died after being transported to the Gartnavel General Hospital in Glasgow. He was admitted to the hospital’s Brownlee unit, which specializes in infectious diseases,

National Health Services has identified four passengers who were possibly seated near the man during the flight. Of the four people contacted, two will be monitored on a daily basis and the other two are considered not to be in need of further observation. Any airline, airport or NHS staff who came in contact with the man will also be monitored.

CCVHF is zoonotic, meaning it is a disease most commonly found in animals but capable of being transmitted to humans. Since CCVHF is not airborne, infection can only be caused by direct contact with infected blood or body fluid, making human-to-human infection extremely rare.There is no safe vaccine for the virus, and mortality rate among those infected ranges from 10 to 40%.… Read the rest

Continue Reading