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10-Year-Old Boy Catches Bubonic Plague in Russia's Altai Region

A 10-year-old boy is being treated for the bubonic plague in Russia’s southern Siberian region of Altai, the Lenta news website reported Wednesday.

The child arrived at hospital on Tuesday with a severe fever and is currently in serious but stable condition. Seventeen people with whom he had been in contact, including six children, have been put into isolation so that their condition can be monitored.

Doctors believe that the boy may have caught the plague during a visit to the mountains, where the disease has been recorded in the region’s marmot population. In 2013, a 15-year-old died in Kyrgyzstan after eating infected marmot meat.

In a 2015 case, an American girl survived after catching the plague in Oregon.

The bubonic plague killed roughly 25 million people in Europe in the Middle Ages, but can now be completely cured using antibiotics.  

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