The US Center for Disease and Control Prevention (CDC) has announced that leprosy cases are increasing in Florida, with a “new report suggesting the central area of the state may have become an ‘endemic location'” for this, yet another, infectious disease. Leprosi is spread by moisture droplets passed through the air, and it can lead to serious disabilities, including nerve damage, if left untreated or not diagnosed in time.
The CDC said the data represented “mounting epidemiological evidence supporting leprosy as an endemic process in the south-eastern United States”.
According to the federal Human Resources and Services Administration, the number of reported leprosy cases in the US fell from 2019 to 2020, it added that this increase should be of concern.
The CDC added that usually, leprosy affected people who had immigrated from leprosy-endemic areas.
What’s different now? The case cited by the CDC involved a man who had not travelled domestically or internationally and had neither had ‘prolonged contact with immigrants from leprosy-endemic countries nor was exposed to armadillos, known to carry leprosy.
The CDC is blaming such a case on environmental reservoirs as a potential source of transmission.
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