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Small Pox Information – Causes and Treatment

One of the most dreaded disease of modern times, smallpox used to be highly contagious, and more than often a life threatening disease. Fortunately this disease has been completely wiped out as declared by the WHO. A highly disfiguring and debilitating disease it claimed the lives of more than 300 million people in the 20th century alone. This disease is caused by the variola virus and although has been eradicated, still brings a shudder to the minds of people. The initial stages of small pox resemble that of flu with fever, headache and extreme lack of energy. As the days pass, deep pus filled boils begin to appear on the patient's skin and once these blisters begin to show up there is no known cure. These blisters often leave deep pits in the individual's skin.

Small Pox Vaccination – Freedom From Smallpox Epidemics

The world has seen the end of smallpox beginning 1980 with mass vaccination and immunization campaigns. However, according to some researchers there are still batches of the virus contained in the laboratory for future study and research needs. The first signs of small pox infection begin almost a fortnight after the person has been infected. During the incubation stage the person seems normal and although the condition appears healthy it is also in an infectious stage. As the fever sets in, there is great feeling of malaise, fatigue, extreme back ache, and at times the onset of vomiting and diarrhea. Shortly afterwards the main feature of the disease begins to set in, that is the rash and pus blisters. These give rise to skin lesions and the typical ways these lesions are spread across the body indicate the small pox infection.

Most people would not survive the second week of the illness. In the earlier days small pox was often confused with chicken pox due to the illness similarities. Small pox is highly contagious during the first week of the disease. The virus quickly settles itself in the infected person's spleen, lymph nodes and mucous membranes of the mouth and throat. What makes this disease so dreaded is the manner it infects large batches of people in one go. The outbreak takes place in two to three week phases. In the first week a small number of people get infected. Two or three weeks later more people get infected and after a gap of two or three weeks, even greater number of people would contract this disease. This was how large communities would get wiped out in a matter of few months.