Smallpox

(Variola Major or Variola Minor)


What causes the disease?
The disease is caused by infection of the variola virus, which comes in two forms: Variola Minor and the more severe Variola Major. Only humans can get this disease naturally, although it has been transmitted to primates and other animals in laboratories.
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What are the symptoms? How long do they last? Is it deadly?SmallpoxvictimIllinois1912.jpg
Symptoms of Variola Major, which usually has a 30% fatality rate, include rashes, high fever, nausea, headaches, back-pains, and malaise, although different forms of Variola Major can cause hemorrhages, which are almost always fatal. Variola Minor, which is not as common, has a 1% fatality rate. Characteristics also include the typical rash and fever, among other things. Usually, obvious symptoms, such as the lesions, start to show around 12 days after you receive the virus. The disease lasts until the last scabs from the rashes have separated or you are dead.

Can it be cured?
No, but you can be vaccinated against it. The vaccine is quite effective but may cause side effects. Once vaccinated you are safe for 10 years.