A Boy In Idaho Contracted The First Case Of Friggin Bubonic Plague in 26 Years

According to health officials, a boy in Idaho was treated for bubonic plague. The Central District Health Department announced the news of the plague's return and said it wasn’t clear whether the boy had contracted it from Idaho or a recent trip to Oregon. According to Time, health officials said ground squirrels around the child’s home in Elmore County tested positive for carrying the disease in both 2015 and 2016. No cases have been reported since.

This is the first human case of the plague in the state in 26 years, the Washington Post reports.

According to the World Health Organization, the Bubonic plague is the most common form, and it’s known for causing swollen lymph nodes or buboes. Much less common is the pneumonic plague, which affects the lungs and can be fatal when not treated early on. It feels as if you have pneumonia with chest pain, coughing, and troubled breathing.

Sarah Corell, an epidemiologist at the Central District Health Department told Time that, “Plague is spread to humans through a bite from an infected flea. People can decrease their risk by treating their pets for flea and avoiding contact with wildlife. Wear insect repellent, long pants and socks when visiting plague affected areas.”

Bubonic plague is most commonly known as the “black death”, and it swept through Europe during the Middle Ages, killing millions of people. Don’t you worry, it can now be easily treated all thanks to modern medicine.

The boy was treated with antibiotics and is currently in stable condition.