Diseases That Are Still Around

Updated at: Feb 09, 2012
Diseases That Are Still Around

Scarlet fever, gout, legion's disease are some of the diseases that may be considered extinct but are still around.

Shreya Lall
LatestWritten by: Shreya LallPublished at: Nov 22, 2011

There were many diseases that were prevalent in older times and are still present today. Quite evidently, however, the diseases present today are not as lethal as they were before.   The first step for eradication of a disease is to trace the carrier. A disease that is spread from a human to human is easier to eradicate compared to one that is spread from an animal to a human. 
For example, in the case of flu, it is hard to eliminate the disease from its roots since the virus that causes flu mutates at a very high rate and can live in a number of organisms such as humans, birds and pigs.

Following are some diseases that have existed for centuries.


Black Death


This plague, responsible for claiming the lives of over 56 million people in Europe in the 14th century still exists in the environment. Even though it is less dangerous, the plague takes root in people or organisms which must have, in some way, had access to previously diseased ecosystems.

Today, the disease is, in most cases, spread by bites from fleas infected with Yersinia pestis. By virtue of this process, when the harm-causing bacterium gets into a person's skin, it gives rise to headache, swollen lymph glands and chills. Since it can be easily spread, it is advisable to get an early treatment through antibiotics. Antibiotics can prove to be very essential for a patient’s survival because it pulls the disease from causing respiratory failure and shock..


Scarlet fever


Scarlet fever was one of the rashest diseases that frequently afflicted the people in the 19th century.

Antibiotics have always been helpful in treating though one must be wary of any complications that may occur, which sometimes, can result in sepsis (bacteria growth in the blood, tissue or bone)



Gout has been known throughout history as an ancient form of inflammatory arthritis. It is caused by metabolic disorder that is not properly controlled. Hence, uric acid crystals build up in tissues and fluids, leading to a red, swollen joint that is very painful  according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. Gout is very common in overweight men and women who have undergone menopause.


Legion’s disease


Legionnaires' disease or the potentially life-threatening pneumonia, no longer exists. On the contrary, the bacteria that cause the disease are still present in the environment.

One of the main causes of legion’s disease is weak immunity.



Paralysis-causing polio is not completely airbrushed from the world today. It is still present in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Nigeria, where unrest and dangerous conditions can make it more difficult to get everyone vaccinated against the disease.


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