Although no effective vaccine is available, scientists are working to develop one. Antibiotics can help prevent infection if you're at risk of or have been exposed to plague. Take the following precautions if you live or spend time in regions where plague outbreaks occur:
- Rodent-proof your home. Remove potential nesting areas, such as piles of brush, rock, firewood and junk. Don't leave pet food in areas that rodents can easily access.
- Keep your pets free of fleas. Ask your veterinarian which flea-control products will work best.
- Wear gloves. When handling potentially infected animals, wear gloves to prevent contact between your skin and harmful bacteria.
- Use insect repellent. Closely supervise your children and pets when spending time outside in areas with large rodent populations. Use insect repellent.
March 15, 2016
- Plague. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/plague/. Accessed Dec. 28, 2015.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, et al. Human plague — United States, 2015. MMWR. 2015;64:918. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6433a6.htm?s_cid=mm6433a6_w. Accessed Dec. 28, 2015.
- Longo DL, et al., eds. Plague and other Yersinia infections. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 19th ed. New York, N.Y.: McGraw-Hill Education; 2015. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed Dec. 28, 2015.
- Plague and other Yersinia infections. Merck Manual Professional Version. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/infectious-diseases/gram-negative-bacilli/plague-and-other-yersinia-infections. Accessed Dec. 28, 2015.