By NewsDesk @ bactiman63
Local media in Edinburgh, Scotland are reporting that two people have been admitted to a local hospital for diphtheria.
This has been confirmed by NHS Lothian.
According to officials, they both recently returned from overseas travel.
Vaccination rates in the Lothian area are high, health officials note.
Alison McCallum, director of public health for NHS Lothian, said: “All close contacts of these patients have been identified, contacted and followed in line with nationally agreed guidelines.
Diphtheria is an acute bacterial respiratory infection that can cause mild to severe illness. Symptoms, develop 2 – 5 days after infection, include fever, sore throat, and swollen lymph glands in the neck. Severe illness presents with swollen neck and thick gray or white patch of dead tissue in the throat and tonsils caused by bacterial toxin.
Complications are the blockage of the airway and the absorption of toxin into the blood stream that can cause damage to the heart, kidneys and peripheral nerves and thus can lead to death. The severely ill patient must visit a hospital for special medical care immediately to save lives.
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Diphtheria is spread from person to person, usually through respiratory droplets, from coughing, sneezing and close contact. A person can also get infected by contacting shared utensils contaminated with the bacteria. Some mild cases can transmit the bacteria to people around them. Recovered patients may not develop immunity against the disease.
The best way to prevent diphtheria is to get vaccinated.