Cases of Vibrio vulnificus identified among Hurricane Katrina evacuees
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Cases of Vibrio vulnificus identified among Hurricane Katrina evacuees

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      Wednesday, September 07, 2005, 19:50 EDT (7:50 PM EDT)


      To date, seven people, in the area affected by Hurricane Katrina, have been reported to be ill from the bacterial disease, Vibrio vulnificus. Four have died. The first cases were reported by the Mississippi Department of Health. V. vulnificus can cause an infection of the skin when open wounds are exposed to warm seawater. People at greatest risk for illness from V. vulnificus are those with weakened immune systems and the elderly. Because V. vulnificus is a bacterium in the same family as the bacteria that causes cholera, some media reports have confused the two pathogens.

      As part of the current investigation, CDC and other response agencies are working with health departments in affected states to help identify persons who might be at increased risk for V. vulnificus and recommend appropriate treatment for them.

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