Townsville Bulletin - - NQ Life -

Queens­land Health has warned house­hold­ers clean­ing up af­ter Cy­clone Yasi to cover any cuts and abra­sions to avoid con­tact with Burkholde­ria pseu­do­ma­llei, the soil­borne bug re­spon­si­ble for me­lioi­do­sis, a po­ten­tially fa­tal in­fec­tion. Townsville Hos­pi­tal di­rec­tor of pathol­ogy Dr Robert Nor­ton re­ports nine cases since De­cem­ber, which he has de­scribed as ‘‘ av­er­age’’.

Pa­tients with un­der­ly­ing ill­nesses are re­garded as most at risk. Symp­toms can be­gin with a chest in­fec­tion, dif­fi­culty breath­ing, fever with headache and con­fu­sion, or pain and/ or dif­fi­culty pass­ing urine. Peo­ple can be­come ill from 1 to 21 days af­ter be­ing in­fected and the on­set of symp­toms may be sud­den or grad­ual.

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