Human plague case surfaces in Colorado

A human case of the plague has surfaced in Colorado, health officials say.

There were no immediate details about the victim – including age, gender or condition – or how they contracted the potentially deadly infection.

The incident was reported in Pueblo County, south of Colorado Springs, officials said.

Last fall, a resident of Archuleta County in southwestern Colorado died of the plague. However, health officials say cases in the U.S. are rare, typically occurring fewer than 17 times a year.

Center of Pueblo, Colorado
A worrying case of plague in humans has emerged in Pueblo, Colorado. Getty Images

Pueblo Department of Public Health Logo
The Pueblo Public Health Department notes that in the Middle Ages, the plague was called the “Black Death.” PDPHE

“In the Middle Ages, the plague was called the ‘Black Death’ because it swept through Europe, killing millions of people,” the Pueblo County Public Health Department says on its website, referring to the fact that many victims developed black, rotting spots on their bodies.

“Today, improved sanitation measures and rodent control have reduced the threat,” the DOH said.

The infamous bacterial infection is often transmitted to humans by rodents and their fleas.

Symptoms may include fever, chills, swollen lymph nodes, and headache.

According to authorities, the disease can be successfully treated with antibiotics if detected early.

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