It seems like now we’re more germophobic than ever before. While in the Middle Ages, people would literally throw their waste out of the window.
People carry antibacterial gel and wipe it everywhere as if the whole world is out to get us.
Although bacteria are actually mostly good for you, like the ones found in your favourite yoghurt, not all bacteria are as friendly to humans.
Top 10 Bacteria That Can Kill You
Curious to find out which? They’re closer than you think! Here are the Top 10 Bacteria That Can kill you! Trust me I have not provided images because it can annoy you.
10. E. Coli Hemorrhagic Colitis
E. Coli isn’t unheard of. We always think of some kind of bad meat when faced with this particular song. The bacteria are usually harmless, living in the intestinal tract and come out in the faecal matter.
There are many kinds of E. Coli, but some are just plain evil. One makes a chemical called Shiga toxin, which, once it makes its way inside you, piggybacking on the E.Coli bacteria, starts causing hemorrhagic colitis which is just as fun as it sounds.
It’s essentially bloody and painful diarrhoea that can cause their host severe dehydration, kidney damage, and fatal blood loss.
They don’t hold on for long, so you can fight with re-hydration and IV fluids until your body fights it off. Left untreated, you could pretty much poop to death.
An estimated 73,400 people become infected in the United States each year, with about60 cases leading to death.
9. Beta-Hemolytic Streptococci
This bacteria may sound weird and obscure, but it actually causes the commonly mentioned Scarlett Fever, which was the leading cause of death for children in the early 20th century.
It was so common that even Charles Darwin lost a child to this disease. The bacteria that causes it isn’t just one, but a group.
The resulting fever manifests first as a sore throat and fever, often called strep throat. Then, it starts showing up as a bumpy, red rash.
Your tongue will also turn red and bumpy. Before killing you, the fever can cause throat abscesses, and heart and kidney failure.
Thanks to the introduction of antibiotics, almost no deaths occur anymore if treated- but if left untreated, you’ll most likely die from complications.
Though by name this microorganism isn’t quite famous, its resulting disease has killed so many celebrities and famous people it’s hard to keep track.
From Franz Kafka and Henry David Thoreau to Nicole Kidman’s character in Moulin Rouge, we’ve seen this disease take the lives of many of our real-life and fictional heroes.
The bacteria has been killing people since the Ancient Egyptians and maybe even longer! Do you know which one we’re talking about? Tuberculosis of course! There are several types of TB, but the most common is pulmonary tuberculosis.
It’s essentially a bacterial infection of the lungs and can make a nice home for itself right inside yours, staying dormant for many years at times.
That’s not where it stops, either, oh no. In severe infections, the bacteria makes its way to other parts of your body like your kidneys or your bones!
It sucks the life out of its sufferers so slowly that it’s often called the “white death”, leaving people pale, frail, and helpless.
In 2018, 1.5 million people died worldwide from complications dealing with tuberculosis.
7. Clostridium Tetani
Okay, maybe not a dead giveaway, but this bacteria does have a little hint in the name. It causes a disease also known under the adorable nicknames “lockjaw” and “the grinning death”.That’s right, tetanus.
It’s your mom’s favourite reason to freak out about you having scraped, cut or puncture your skin.
The disease is caused by the clostridium tetani bacteria which is found in dirt or contaminated soil and starts destroying your whole system using a toxin called tetanus toxin, which binds between nerve cells and muscles which causes muscle spasms.
Of course, these cause the locking of the jaw, grinding of the teeth, involuntary smiles, and muscle spasms so strong they can actually break your bones!
Of course, death can come as a result of any of these symptoms or from paralysis of the respiratory muscles.
In fact, worldwide in 2017, just over 38,000people died from complications, most of which were in Central Africa.
6. Neisseria Meningitidis
Most common in sub-Saharan Africa, this bacteria leads to Meningococcal Meningitis, which is an infection of the nervous system showing up as fever, headache, stiffness, visual changes and vomiting.
Sometimes, people develop rashing and bleeding into the skin and organs.
The infection caused by Neisseria Meningitidisis fatal, however, modern medicine has allowed vaccines that make it less prominent and not as large of a threat as it used to be.
Even with proper treatment though, roughly170,000 people die globally every year.
5. Bacillus Anthracis
This bacteria causes a very familiar disease and bioterrorist weapon. Can you guess what? It’s Anthrax! It’s found in three forms, respiratory, skin, and gastrointestinal.
It’s super dangerous because its spores can be transmitted through the air and the inhalation of it is absolutely deadly. In fact, back in 2001, it was used to contaminate mail envelopes.
When contracted through the skin, you’ll see ulcers surface. But, that’s the less severe of the types.
Inhaled, it starts with flu-like symptoms and moves to chest pain, shortness of breath and blood infections that eventually cause death, at a rate of 80%, actually.
The gastrointestinal one is obtained from undercooked meat and also causes ulcers, just on the inside anywhere from your mouth to your anus (you’re welcome for that image)and can cause serious bleeding.
Anthrax is so strong it can also infect your brain and spinal cord. Basically, it’s vastly unpleasant, but treatable, so rush to a doctor, yeah?
This bacteria pretty much is yellow-obsessed. From it’s spreading to its resulting symptoms, we find this colour everywhere.
This bacteria is coiled and spiral and spreads from animals to humans, usually through urine. It causes a disease called Leptospirosis, which doesn’t always attack the same way and can be difficult to diagnose.
Sometimes, those infected have no symptoms whatsoever. Other times, the skin turns yellow and your kidneys fail, which usually leads to death.
It is estimated that 7 to 10 million people become infected worldwide annually, with 59,000of those cases becoming fatal.
3. Treponema Pallidum
This bacteria causes well-known and stigmatized Syphilis infection. It’s often called the “great imitator” because it loves to play hide-and-seek dress-up.
This is a game when you dress up like other diseases to hide from the treatment that going to eliminate you entirely.
It’s not really fun, but it’s a little Syphilis’favorite. Famous people in history such as Van Gogh and Beethoven probably had the disease, according to historians.
The infection has three stages. The first, ulcers on the genitals which could resolve or even go unnoticed. Second, flu-like symptoms.
Finally, a rash appears, as well as hair loss, headaches, and liver inflammation. Then, what? Well, then it goes to sleep, sometimes for up to 30 years, when it might start at a late phase causing heart problems, infecting your nervous system and even causing insanity.
Although cures have been available, roughly100,000 people still die annually worldwide from the disease.
2. Clostridium Difficile
This infection happens when the bacteria war going on at all times in your intestines between the good guys and the bad guys is won by the latter.
The intestines become infected, swollen and they can even burst! The resulting disease is called Toxic Megacolon, which may or may not be my supervillain name.
Severe cases will have patients on the operating table getting entire sections of their bowels removed to save their life.
It doesn’t even have to get to the point where there’s bursting or perforation; the infection alone is enough to seriously threaten your life. Luckily, this disease is also treatable when caught in a timely fashion.
1. Necrotizing Fasciitis
Finally, one we know and hate. Flesh-eating bacteria haunts all of our minds. This bacteria infects tissue and starts causing the death of the actual structures.
There are actually lots of bacteria that cause this. During the US Civil War, there were a lot of cases in which soldiers suffered the disease, brace for impact, their genitals!
The best part, a lot of guys gained lovely tenor singing voices (just kidding about that… there was no best part).
The worst part? There’s nothing you can do at this point. After the bacteria has caused the death of the tissue, the only real option is to amputate and remove it.
Hope you’re good at goodbyes! Feel like taking a nice long shower now? Annually, roughly 1,000 people will die every year in the United States from complications.
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