Plague is a disease that affects humans and other mammals. It is caused by the bacterium, Yersinia pestis. Humans usually get plague after being bitten by a rodent flea that is carrying the plague bacterium or by handling an animal infected with plague. Plague is infamous for killing millions of people in Europe during the Middle Ages. Today, modern antibiotics are effective in treating plague. Without prompt treatment, the disease can cause serious illness or death. Presently, human plague infections continue to occur in the western United States, but significantly more cases occur in parts of Africa and Asia.
Information for Healthcare ProfessionalsAnswers for clinicians, public health officials, and veterinarians...
SymptomsImportant signs and symptoms of plague...
Diagnosis and TreatmentWhat to expect from your physician...
PreventionTips for people living in areas with plague...
Maps and StatisticsDistribution of plague, number of cases and more...
- Fact Sheet
- MMWR, Human Plague — United States, 2015
- Human plague: Transmission from person to person [PDF - 2 page]
- Podcast: Epidemiology of Human Plague in the United States, 1900–2012
- USGS National Wildlife Health Center: Plague, 2012
- Bioterrorism and plague treatment and consensus statement
- CDC Emergency Preparedness and Response
- Page last reviewed: September 10, 2015
- Page last updated: September 10, 2015
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