by thomplil000
Last updated 7 years ago

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Smallpox is caused by the variola virus. There are two forms of this virus. The more dangerous form, variola major, caused smallpox disease that was fatal for about 30% of people infected. A virus called variola minor caused a less deadly form of smallpox, with a fatality rate of about 1%.

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared smallpox officially eradicated in 1979. Only a small amount of the virus has been kept alive under tightly controlled conditions in the U.S. and Russia for medical research.

Symptoms of smallpox include:Flu-like fatigue, headache, body ache, and occasionally vomiting.High fever.Mouth sores and blisters that spread the virus into the throat.A progressive skin rash that follows a predictable pattern:The rash starts with flat red sores that a few days later become raised bumps.The bumps turn into fluid-filled blisters.The blisters become pustules.The pustules crust over, usually in the second week of smallpox.Scabs form over the blisters and then fall off, usually in the third week of the disease, resulting in scars that are often disfiguring.Blindness commonly resulted when blisters formed near the eyes.



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