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Old 12-06-2019, 12:05 PM
da_wanderer da_wanderer is offline
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Default Plague Outbreaks in the coming years



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So, I had an ugly thought recently regarding the homeless problem in California. There were Typhus outbreaks this past summer, and I am not sure if that is still ongoing.

The homeless population is defecating in the streets and on the sidewalks. These are similar conditions to the open sewers that were common during the Black Plague. We know there are plenty of rats and fleas from the Typhus.

Plague is endemic to praire dog populations in the Southwest. It is not a great leap to think that plague can get started in the CA homeless population. There are always a few cases of plague each year. If the homeless and sanitation problems in CA continue or get worse it is only a matter of time.

We are in a neighborhood right on the edge of town. I have put out a number of bait boxes to start wiping out the local rats. I have just noticed a lack of squirrels this year, but I do not know why their numbers are down.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:29 PM
swamppapa swamppapa is offline
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Reduced squirrel numbers I attribute to domestic cats being allowed to run. I would be more concerned about cholera from deficating in the streets. It happened in Haiti when the Japanese relief workers didn’t observe field hygiene rules.

Plague is carried by the fleas the fleas seek other hosts after the ratprairiedogsquirrel dies. So take precautions when handling your trapped rodents
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:31 PM
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It will eventually happen.

In addition to what you point out, there are a number of drug resistant infections in hospitals now. It is not out of the question that one of those will get loose in the general population and wreak havoc.

What can you do about it if/when it happens. Get completely away from people? and live on your preps......
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:43 PM
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One thing to note about the plague of the Black Death - most of the deaths came from pneumonic plague, not plague from flea bites. Pneumonia from the plague is almost as bad as Anthrax pneumonia, in that you can be well past treatment when the Docs figure out what it is you have.

Y. pestis can be misidentified by some (if not most) automated bacterial ID systems, which means that the patient might not be isolated rapidly, the microbiology staff might not take the correct precautions in the lab, the nursing staff or family members might become secondary victims....and on and on. (I haven't worked in a lab for a lot of years, so the newer ID systems might be better than the ones I worked with - I certainly hope so.)

Just like the measles, chicken pox, mumps and other childhood diseases that have become rare (or should have become rare) a lot of young doctors are unable to recognize Y. pestis infections rapidly. Doctors aren't taught to see things the way they once were. There is a test or an image or something that can be ordered, instead of using a good patient history and common sense.....

(As an unrelated aside, I once had a doctor upset that the blood cultures he ordered kept coming up as negative. How could that be, the patient spiked a fever every 72 hours? I asked "Did he serve in the Pacific during WWII?" Yes he did. I asked "do you think he might have malaria?" Ding ding ding...winner winner chicken dinner.)
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:55 PM
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Try the book The Coming Plague.
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Old 12-06-2019, 01:02 PM
Florida Jean Florida Jean is online now
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some recent plague in China too. Much higher population. Ditto in the Congo. It is rather 'common' worldwide but only in small case numbers. [i.e. background noise type of bacteria].

rats and fleas [which will move to other animals and humans, though fleas prefer their own variety of mammal]. Pnuemonic spread is the most dangerous.

Fortunately, we have antibotics.

China will just order the slaughter of all pets [since pretty much everything else has been eaten/non-existent]. Congo doesn't have the ability to do more than set up antibiotic clinics -- to much wild space.

California won't order animal slaughter in the cities. Probably will put rat traps up. [if they haven't]. They will just treat the homeless as they get sick. Some of the homeless will functioning brain cells will go somewhere else -- which could spread it further from the outbreak point.

Squirrel populations seem to go in cycles -- high pop. which often leads to disease or exhaustion of food sources to low populations [that you can't readily see] then back up again. Predator populations can follow that same cycle depending upon how much they depend on one prey species. Also oaks, run in acorn cycles too which effects the squirrels.

Being older I don't worry about the measles, etc. outbreaks that are occurring/coming; which I believe will cause a greater problem than the plague [since the average American doesn't live 6-10 in a room like many in the dark/middle ages].

Frankly, since 'THEY' haven't sufficiently managed to deal with Pakistan and polio -- I wouldn't be surprised that traveled over here soon enough. Believe I was vaccinated for that twice -- the original and the later one.

Back to the Plague. Cities historically had always been disease and population sinks. They had negative population growth and required regular emigration from the surrounding agricultural countryside. With that emigration and trade which also carried disease folks were dying all the time. Perhaps we are returning to that standard.

Remember reading in various places that people who moved to the older cities way back when generally lived 5-10 years before dying. There is a reason why the rich had country homes to raise their families.

Last edited by Florida Jean; 12-06-2019 at 01:08 PM.. Reason: word
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Old 12-06-2019, 01:36 PM
roseman roseman is offline
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There is so much extra baggage like that associated with urban living yet the city dwellers deride our lifestyle.
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Old 12-06-2019, 02:28 PM
William Ashley William Ashley is offline
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Its treatable with antibiotics.. not an issue unless it outpaces antibiotics... i.e. plauge with antibiotic resistance.

There are even new treatments, but I suspect phage therapy would be a solution for the plague.
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Old 12-06-2019, 04:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William Ashley View Post
Its treatable with antibiotics.. not an issue unless it outpaces antibiotics... i.e. plauge with antibiotic resistance.

There are even new treatments, but I suspect phage therapy would be a solution for the plague.
The problem is getting doctors to recognize what they are treating before the patient dies.....
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Old 12-06-2019, 06:24 PM
PeterWiggin PeterWiggin is online now
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yersinia pestis is common here in Colorado. Every year, there's an issue somewhere. This was only a few months ago...

https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/17/us/bu...ado/index.html -- Plague-infected prairie dogs have shut down parts of a Denver suburb
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:50 PM
shado shado is offline
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Actually, I believe they were Nepalese aid workers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by swamppapa View Post
Reduced squirrel numbers I [/I][/U]attribute to domestic cats being allowed to run. I would be more concerned about cholera from deficating in the streets. It happened in Haiti when the Japanese relief workers didn’t observe field hygiene rules.

Plague is carried by the fleas the fleas seek other hosts after the ratprairiedogsquirrel dies. So take precautions when handling your trapped rodents
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William Ashley View Post
Its treatable with antibiotics.. not an issue unless it outpaces antibiotics... i.e. plauge with antibiotic resistance.

There are even new treatments, but I suspect phage therapy would be a solution for the plague.
We are outpacing antibiotics. At some point, there will be something that kicks off that is antibiotic-resistant. Last I heard there is very little in the way of new development in this field and microbs evolve.

It is only a matter of time.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zumhug View Post
We are outpacing antibiotics. At some point, there will be something that kicks off that is antibiotic-resistant. Last I heard there is very little in the way of new development in this field and microbs evolve.

It is only a matter of time.
While the threat is real, there is actually quite a bit of innovation and development in this area. And almost constant investigation and trial.

Read an article a couple months ago about the WHO adding some of the newer antibiotics to their essential list.

Found it:
Quote:
...Based on recommendations from an expert committee, the WHO added ceftazidime-avibactam, meropenem-vaborbactam, and plazomicin to its Essential Medicines List, which is updated annually. All three antibiotics target multidrug-resistant infections caused by pathogens deemed a "critical priority" by the WHO, including carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae.

The newly added antibiotics are classified as "reserve" antibiotics under the WHO's AWaRe (Access, Watch, and Reserve) designation, developed by the agency in 2017 to guide responsible antibiotic prescribing, curb development of resistance, and ensure that antibiotics remain effective and are available when needed...

...Ceftazidime-avibactam, meropenem-vaborbactam, and plazomicin are relatively new antibiotics, all having been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration within the last 5 years...
http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-persp...t%205%20years.

The problem is on-going though. As new drugs are developed and fielded, they'll eventually be over prescribed and lead to resistance, starting the cycle again.
My real concern is a hybrid flu making the jump. We've been lucky so far, but there are far too many people in poor over-crowded and warm countries with poor sanitation and inferior medical systems.
It's going to happen.

IMHO, always live somewhere that it freezes every year. Does wonders to keep all sorts of nasties at bay.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:52 PM
Steve_In_29 Steve_In_29 is offline
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Iirc they have already had plague cases in Los Angeles.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:13 PM
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In the Middle Ages, wealthier people in England would move to their country estates when there was an outbreak. The millionaire libs in Cali can tolerate the homeless, but if they start spreading the Black Death they'll all probably end up quarantined in an old military base. Plague epidemics mainly affected areas with high population densities and areas that depended on grain for food. When the rats exhausted the grain stores, they'd die and the fleas would move to humans.
The way humans live in the US doesn't lend itself well to extensive bubonic plague outbreaks.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:27 PM
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Preparing for plagues/pandemics is mostly like preparing for other long term crises.

You need to have some significant/effective physical separation that you can maintain from others and enough supplies/resources to self isolate for several months to a few years.

The secondary effects of such a disruption of the ROL and society in general, may last much longer or indeed preclude the return of normal times entirely.

Most pandemics will roll through an area with a few infection peaks that maybe several months apart.

Avoiding contact with others is the only real defence (at least until an effective vaccine is available).

But like most types of severe crises, few (even here) are prepared for that.
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Old 12-07-2019, 12:50 AM
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Flu is from a virus and antibiotics are not effective against viruses. Though some secondary infections like pneumonia are bacterial and antibiotics are effective. Two different pneumonia vaccines also provide protection against about 30 of the more common or dangerous bacterial infections, for older or weakened immune system people.
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Old 12-07-2019, 01:33 AM
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We are suffering a plague of greed, corruption and stupidity in gubernment. You ever look at pic's from North Korea. There isn't any song birds and other small animals - the starving people ate them. Rats and things are on the short list when the gubernment runs out of free stuff.
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Old 12-07-2019, 02:05 AM
swamppapa swamppapa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shado View Post
Actually, I believe they were Nepalese aid workers.
you are correct

https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-...lled-thousands

"A panel of experts appointed by the U.N. found that the strain of cholera that popped up in Haiti was "a perfect match" for a strain found in Nepal. Nepalese peacekeepers were staying at the U.N. camp, and poor sanitation sent sewage from the camp into local waterways."

(should have just blamed the U.N.)
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Old 12-07-2019, 08:27 AM
Florida Jean Florida Jean is online now
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OK. News said last night there are 2 million rats in NYC. Didn't say what area it considered 'NYC' or who figured that out [as 'would it be better to stop counting now at 2 million so the mayor doesn't get mad at us', sort of thing]. Or how 'old' the data is. The 'factoid' came out in a chat about that 'Coffee Rat' in the subway video.
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