Plague is an infection. Governments have studied the bacteria's use as a germ-warfare weapon. As a weapon, it would be released in the air. The types of plague are:
- Pneumonic, in the lungs, from breathing in droplets or as a progression of another type
- Bubonic plague, in the lymph nodes, occurring after a flea bite
- Septicemic plague, a body system-wide infection, occurring after a flea bite
The plague is treated with isolation and antibiotics.
Plague is caused by specific bacteria.
Bubonic and septicemic plagues are spread by bites from infected fleas. Transmission can also occur when a person comes in contact with infected tissue or body fluids from another person or animal.
Pneumonic plague is spread by droplets in the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The disease is transmitted to another person when the droplets are inhaled. Transmission by droplets is the only way pneumonic plague spreads among people.
Last reviewedMay 2013by Igor Puzanov, MD; Brian Randall, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.