Anthrax is a serious disease caused by bacteria such as spores, Bacillus anthracis. Although anthrax has an effect on a lot of cattle and wild animals, humans can become infected through contact directly or indirectly with sick animals. Normally anthrax is not spread from human to human, but in rare cases, injury to the skin due to anthrax can be transmitted.

The most common is anthrax enters the body through cuts in the skin. You also can become infected by eating contaminated meat or inhale its spores. Symptoms are based on the way you are infected, ranging from skin lesions to early and vomiting.

Rapid treatment with antibiotics can cure many infections caused anthrax through the skin or contaminated meat. Inhalation anthrax is more difficult to treat and can be fatal.


There are three types of anthrax, each has different signs and symptoms. In many cases, symptoms occurred within 7 days after exposure to the bacteria.

Cutaneous anthrax

This form of anthrax enters the body through wounds or ulcers on the skin. So far as this form is the most common. Symptoms of cutaneous anthrax include:

• bumps, sores itch like insect bites that quickly turned into a wound that did not ache with black center

• Swelling in the lymph nodes near the wound or

Gastrointestinal anthrax

This happens if you eat meat infected with anthrax and immature. Signs and symptoms include:

• Nausea

• Vomiting, which is accompanied by blood in the later stages

• Loss of appetite

• Fever

• Severe diarrhea was bloody stage

• Sore throat and difficulty in swallowing

• Swelling in the neck

Inhalation (pulmonary) anthrax

This type occurs when you inhale anthrax spores. This is the form most likely to cause death, and even with treatment often end up fatal. Signs and symptoms are typical:

• flu-like symptoms, such as sore throat, mild fever, fatigue and muscle aches, which disappear within a few hours or days

• mild discomfort in the chest

Along with the progress of the disease, you may experience:

• High fever

• Difficulty breathing

• Surprised

• Meningitis-inflammation of the brain or back spinal  potentially life-threatening

Causes & Risk Factors


Anthrax spores are formed by bacteria that are naturally present in the soil. Spores can be dormant for several years until they get a host-usually cattle or wild animals, such as sheep, horses, goats and camels.

Many cases of anthrax occur due to infection from the meat they eat or through the skin. For example leather from infected animals.

Risk factors

The risk of anthrax can be increased if you:

• You are a member of the military or employees assigned to areas with high risk of anthrax

• Work on anthrax lab

• Dealing with animal skin, fur or wool of the area with anthrax incident

• Working in a veterinary hospital


Antibiotics are recommended for anyone who prevents infection in exposed spores. Ciprofloxacin and doxycyline recommended for adults and children. Levofloxacin also be used for adults.

Anthrax vaccine

Been available anthrax vaccines for humans, but not 100 percent effective. This vaccine does not contain live bacteria and can not cause an infection, but can cause side effects ranging from a wound on the part that is injected through a more serious allergic reaction. The vaccine is not recommended for children, pregnant women or those who are elderly.

Avoid the infected animals

If you live or will be traveling to areas where there are many cases of anthrax, avoid contact with meat and animal skins as possible. Also avoid eating meat that is not thoroughly cooked.


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