Australia – Flesh eating Buruli Ulcer spreads in the inner suburbs of Melbourne
A flesh-eating disease is spreading in parts of Australia which prompted the Victoria health department to issue a warning on Tuesday. The chief health officer of Victoria, Professor Brett Sutton, issued an advisory for health professionals and residents of the Essendon, Moonee Ponds and Brunswick West areas of inner Melbourne where several cases of Buruli ulcer, a chronic debilitating disease caused by an environmental Mycobacterium ulcerans, have been detected.
Researchers are still trying to discover how the Buruli ulcer spreads to humans. “If people present with a small mosquito bite that doesn’t look quite right there’s a very good diagnostic test. “If you’re given the right antibiotics then there’s a really good clinical outcome for people.” Australian chief health officer Professor Brett Sutton has now issued a health alert.
The alert was deemed necessary because the skin infection, which can eat away at flesh and return even after treatment, had seemingly jumped from known hotspots on Victoria’s Surf Coast and the Mornington Peninsula to inner Melbourne.
Buruli ulcer is not transmissible from person to person, and there is no evidence of transmission between possums and humans, the Health Department said.Professor Stinear said the best defence was to thoroughly wash any cuts or bites and good mosquito control.