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CDC Says People Can Contract Tuberculosis From Deer

Anyone working closely with animals that might carry the infection should be screened for tuberculosis

MONDAY, Sept. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) — According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, humans can contract a rare type of tuberculosis, called bovine tuberculosis, from deer.

Such was the case of one 77-year-old Michigan hunter, who most likely got sick by inhaling the pathogen while removing a dead deer’s infected organs, CNN reports. The patient had been hunting in an area where two other hunters were infected more than 15 years ago.

Bovine tuberculosis makes up less than 2 percent of all tuberculosis cases in the United States. Although mostly eliminated in cattle, it is still found in wild bison, elk, and deer, the CDC said. The infection is usually contracted by eating or drinking unpasteurized dairy products or having direct contact though an open wound while hunting or slaughtering an infected animal, CNN reports.

Although rare, anyone working closely with animals that might carry the infection and anyone who consumes unpasteurized dairy products should be screened for tuberculosis, CNN said.

CNN Article

More Information: CDC

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