Advertisement

Concern After Two Plague Cases Diagnosed In China

Chinese authorities have tried to pacify the public's fears after two cases of plague were diagnosed in Beijing.

Two patients from the Inner Mongolia region were diagnosed with pneumonic plague on Tuesday evening at a hospital in Beijing's Chaoyang District, the district's government said.

Pneumonic plague, a fatal and highly infectious disease, is caused by the same bacterium as bubonic plague, or the Black Death that killed millions in the Middle Ages.

An anteroposterior (AP) chest x-ray of a plague patient revealing bilateral infection, greater on the patient's left side, which was diagnosed as a case of pneumonic plague. Image: Getty

Authorities tried to dispel fears of an outbreak of the illness.

The Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention said the two cases "have been properly treated" and the epidemic "effectively controlled."

"Beijing citizens do not have to worry too much about the risk of plague. Beijing is not a plague pesthole," the CDC said in a statement on its website, adding that there was no plague in the natural environment, and rats were not infested.

People on social media expressed concern, however, that the disease might have already spread during the patients' travel to Beijing and their stay in the central Chaoyang district.

Social media users have been worrying this is the return of the 'Black Death', which killed nearly a third of the population in Europe in the 1300s.

Image: Getty

"How did these people come to Beijing? Were there medical personnel monitoring them?" one Weibo user wrote. "The population of Chaoyang District is highly dense, especially the number of patients in Chaoyang Hospital."

Science

READ MORE

A Whole Town Has Been Quarantined After A Couple Died Of Bubonic Plague

A couple have died of the bubonic plague after eating raw meat, sending an entire Mongolian town into a quarantine lock down.

Social media users have been worrying this is the return of the 'Black Death', which killed nearly a third of the population in Europe in the 1300s.

However, scientists believe the Black Death was the bubonic plague, not the pneumonic plague that is the most recent diagnoses.

While China used to record about 20 cases of plague annually in the 1980s, diagnoses have been "sporadic" since 2010, the CDC said.