Warning Over Queensland Flesh-Eating Disease
Queenslanders are being warned of a flesh-eating disease that can leave infected victims disfigured if not treated.
Known as the Daintree Ulcer (or Buruli Ulcer), the bacterial disease requires surgical removal before being treated with antibiotics.
The warning comes after The Cairns and Hinterland Hospital and Health Service confirmed a local had been infected.
The Cairns Post reports there are usually one or two cases of the disease each year. In 2011, an outbreak saw 65 people infected.
It’s believed the bacteria which eats away slowly at human tissue is transmitted by mosquitoes.
People living and visiting the Daintree region are being told to wear insect repellent and protective clothing when outside to try and avoid being bitten.
Symptoms of Daintree ulcer
- A spot that looks like a mosquito or spider bite forms on the skin (most commonly on the limbs).
- The spot grows bigger over days or weeks.
- The spot may form a crusty, non-healing scab.
- The scab then disintegrates into an ulcer.
- The ulcer continues to enlarge.
- Unlike other ulcers, this ulcer is usually painless and there is generally no fever or other signs of infection.
- The infection may sometimes present with no ulceration but with localised pain, swelling and fever, raised lumps, or thickened or raised flat areas of skin.