The way that people contract Anthrax is through contact with infected animals or eating meat that has been contaminated with the bacterium. In any event, it is a very serious illness which requires treatment. You may also contract Anthrax through open sores in your skin. Another possibility, though not common, is to contract it through another person’s skin lesion that has anthrax.
There are three types of Anthrax that a person can get, and these are, (1) Anthrax of the skin known as Cutaneous Anthrax, (2) Anthrax of the GI tract known as Gastrointestinal Anthrax, and then there is the third type known as, (3) Inhalation Anthrax which infects the lungs.
Diagnosing Anthrax all depends upon which type you are suspected of having. If there is a lesion on the skin that appears suspicious, a skin test will be done along with a blood test to look for the bacterium. Taking a chest xray will help the doctor diagnose the pulmonary type of Anthrax.
For the gastrointestinal type of Anthrax, stool cultures will be taken along with taking a look at the GI tract through use of endoscopy.
Symptoms of Anthrax on the skin are those such as;
A place on the skin which looks as though you have been bitten by an insect. Within a short period of time, there is the emerging of a sore with a black center in it. The sore will become very swollen, and so will the lymph glands.
Symptoms of GI Anthrax are those such as:
You’ll develop nausea along with vomiting and the vomiting will become full of blood as this form of Anthrax progresses. You will also have no appetite and a fever. As this nasty disease progresses further, there will be a severe and bloody diarrhea, along with problems in swallowing and a sore throat.
Symptoms of Pulmonary Anthrax are those such as:
You will have a low grade fever, and tiredness of the body. There will be body aches in the muscles, and some chest pains too. As this form of Anthrax continues its progression, it will cause a lot of breathing problems with a high fever, and a high probability of meningitis.
It is important that if you feel you were exposed to Anthrax in any way, to contact your doctor very quickly, and the sooner the better. Anthrax can be cured so long as you receive prompt treatment. The course of antibiotics for Anthrax is two months. The hardest one to get rid of is the pulmonary type since this type seems to carry more toxins with it than the others.