Has Typhoid Fever Been Eradicated?

Although typhoid fever no longer engenders the kind of fear that it did a century ago, it is by no means a thing of the past. In fact, outside of developed nations in North America and Western Europe, where modern sanitation methods have virtually eradicated typhoid outbreaks, the disease still kills approximately 200,000 people every year and infects tens of millions of others. Caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhi, the illness thrives in impure food and water, which is why immunization is stressed for those traveling to developing countries. In fact, most of the roughly 6,000 cases reported in the United States each year are caused by travelers returning from international trips.

Lesser known facts about diseases:

  • Mocking lengthy medical terms, Everett M. Smith coined the word pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis for a lung disease in the 1930s.

  • In the four years between 1347 and 1351, bubonic plague killed about half of Europe's population of 450 million people.

  • Based on current figures, one out of every three Americans will suffer from diabetes by the year 2050.

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More Info: Centers for Disease Control

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