The History and Present State of the Bubonic Plague

Topics: Black Death, Bubonic plague, Yersinia pestis Pages: 2 (472 words) Published: March 3, 2002
The History and the Present State
of the
Bubonic Plague

The Bubonic Plague got it's name because of the symptoms of the disease. Bubonic plague causes swollen lymph nodes, called buboes. These swollen lymph nodes are found in the groin area, which is "boubon" in Latin (Discovery).This disease became known as a "plague" because of its huge fatality rate throughout time. Bubonic plague was also known as the "Black Death" in Medieval times. This is because the dried blood under the skin turns black.

The Plague is caused by an infection with Yersian pestis. Yersian Pertis is a bacteria carried by rats and fleas found in parts of Asia, Africa, and North and South America. Plague is given to humans by being bitten by a flea with the disease or by plague infected tissue. When Yersinia Pertis gets into the body, it goes to the liver, spleen, kidneys, lungs, and brain. Some of the symptons are shivering, vomiting, headache, giddiness, intolerance to light, pain in the back and limbs, or white coating on the tongue(Discovery). After a couple days places that have lymph nodes start to hurt (neck, armpits, and the groin). After the pains, there is swelling of the lymph nodes called "boboes", which are hard lumps that begin to appear on the groin, neck, and armpit. Blood vessels then bust, which causes internal bleeding. Dried blood under the skin begins to turn black(Discovery). The plague was called the Black Death because of the black blood(History). Fourteenth century doctors didn't know what caused the plague, but they knew it was contagious. They wore a protective suit which had a mask with a beak. The beak of the mask, was filled with vinegar, sweet oils and other strong smelling things so that they would not have to smell the dead and dying people(History).

The Bubonic plague has a vaccine, which lasts for about 6 months. The plague vaccine is not available in the United States but a new vaccine is being worked on. The plague can be treated if caught...
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