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Symptoms of Plague

Symptoms of Septicemic Plague

Bubonic plague symptoms can progress rapidly to symptoms of septicemic plague. A person can also have septicemic plague without having symptoms of bubonic plague first. Septicemic plague occurs when the bacteria that cause the disease invade the bloodstream, producing severe illness.
Symptoms seen with this type of plague can include:
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Severe headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Delirium
  • Death.

Symptoms of Pneumonic Plague

Other than the lymphatic system, the lungs are the organ most commonly affected by plague bacteria. Approximately 10 to 20 percent of people with bubonic plague will also develop symptoms of pneumonic plague.
Symptoms of this type of plague can include:
  • Cough
  • Fever
  • Increased breathing.
As pneumonic plague worsens, symptoms can include:
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Coughing up blood
  • Respiratory failure
  • Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).
Death typically occurs within two to six days. The mortality rate of pneumonic plague is 75 percent, despite appropriate plague treatment.

Other Plague Symptoms

In less than 10 percent of people, plague meningitis can occur as a result of the disease. Symptoms of plague meningitis include:
  • Stiff neck
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Confusion
  • Coma.

The Plague

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