Life-threatening rat pee infections attain report ranges in NYC

A rat looks for food while on a subway platform at the Columbus Circle - 59th Street station on May 8, 2023, in New York City.

Enlarge / A rat seems to be for meals whereas on a subway platform on the Columbus Circle – 59th Road station on Might 8, 2023, in New York Metropolis. (credit score: Getty | Gary Hershorn)

A life-threatening bacterial an infection sometimes unfold via rat urine sickened a report variety of folks in New York Metropolis final 12 months—and this 12 months seems to be on monitor for an additional all-time excessive, the NYC Division of Well being and Psychological Hygiene studies.

The an infection is leptospirosis, which might trigger a spread of signs, together with non-specific ones like fever, headache, chills, muscle aches, vomiting, diarrhea, and cough. However, if left untreated, can turn into extreme, inflicting kidney failure, liver injury, jaundice, hemorrhage, bloody eyes (conjunctival suffusion), respiratory misery, and probably dying.

The micro organism that causes it—spirochete micro organism of the genus Leptospira—infect rats, which shed the micro organism of their urine. The germs bounce to folks via direct contact with open wounds or mucous membranes.

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