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The Department of Disease Control (DDC) has issued a warning about the risk of contracting leptospirosis during floods.

The Department of Disease Control (DDC) has issued a warning about the risk of contracting leptospirosis during floods.

Leptospirosis is a dangerous zoonotic (shared between animals and humans) infectious disease caused by the bacterium Leptospira. Without treatment, leptospirosis can lead to kidney and liver damage, meningitis, and death.

In Thailand, the sources of leptospirosis agents are infected animals, primarily rats, and occasionally other animals. The bacterium enters the water through the urine of infected animals. Infection can occur during bathing in contaminated water bodies or on moist or flooded areas. The bacterium enters the human body through cracks, cuts, wounds on the skin, or mucous membranes. Consumption of contaminated food and water can also cause the disease.

As of September 24, 2023, Thailand has reported 2,700 cases of leptospirosis, with 31 resulting in fatalities. The highest number of cases has been recorded in the northeastern and southern regions.

Precautions for the public:

- Avoid walking barefoot in flooded areas or mud. If necessary, wear boots or clean plastic bags over shoes. After walking in water, wash hands and feet with soap and water promptly.

- If you have wounds, cover them with waterproof bandages to prevent direct contact with contaminated water.

- Control and eliminate rats in living areas, workplaces, and tourist sites. Ensure proper drainage, and clean areas having contaminated water.

- If you experience symptoms such as high fever, headache, body ache (especially in the thighs and calves), nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, red eyes, promptly consult a doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

 

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