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Home > Anthrax outbreak in heroin users in the UK and Germany.

Health Research Board. Alcohol and Drug Research Unit. (2010) Anthrax outbreak in heroin users in the UK and Germany. Drugnet Ireland , Issue 33, Spring 2010 , p. 26.

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Since early December 2009, public health authorities in Scotland have identified 27 cases of anthrax in heroin users, of whom 10 have died. In England, there were three cases of anthrax among heroin users, one of whom died. In Germany, one heroin user died of an anthrax infection. Anthrax is a very rare but serious infection caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. If the bacterium enters the bloodstream or the brain and is not treated early, it is usually fatal. Important symptoms of anthrax are marked redness and swelling around an injection site and/or a very high temperature. There have been no cases of anthrax infection identified in Ireland.
 
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