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The next battle: disease

Health officials fear diseases could break out within days, with thousands of people in makeshift camps with poor sanitation.

Three major threats

CHOLERA
is a bacterial infection of the intestine that causes diarrhea, vomiting, and rapid loss of body fluids leading to dehydration and shock.

Transmitted by consuming contaminated food or water, disease spreads rapidly in areas without adequate drinking water or sewage treatment.

TYPHOID
is a bacterial infection of the blood and liver that causes life-threatening fever.

Transmitted by consuming contaminated food or water, infected people can spread the disease by handling food or drink.

MALARIA
is a parasitic infection of the blood and liver. Leading cause of death worldwide.

Transmitted by infected mosquitoes, disease spreads rapidly in areas with abundant standing water where people lack protection from mosquito bites.

Fighting back

Improving sanitary conditions is key to preventing epidemic. Dead bodies are less contagious than an infected, living person.

SOURCE: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Globe Staff Graphic/KATHLEEN HENNRIKUS

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