Two more hospitalized in Russian anthrax outbreak

Two additional people have been hospitalized with suspected anthrax exposure in Russia's Altai territory.

According to Deputy Governor Daniil Bessarabov, 13 people have been hospitalized with suspected exposure to anthrax. Three of those hospitalized have been confirmed to have anthrax, UPI reports.

The first signs of the anthrax outbreak came on Saturday when three people from the Druzhba village were hospitalized with anthrax infections. As a precaution, the entire village of Druzhba, with a population of 740, was quarantined and all residents were examined by doctors. On Monday, mass vaccinations began.

Officials said that one person has died from anthrax exposure in South Siberia. Additionally, a man from the nearby village of Marushka is believed to have contracted anthrax according to UPI.

The infected "are people who were living in the same homes as those infected or came into contact with infected animals," Bessarabov said, UPI reports. He added that the infection was "geographically localized. Preventive measures are being carried out not only in the villages of Druzhba and Marushka but much farther afield. We are trying to find out all the people who had contacts with infected animals among residents in other villages."

Anthrax can be fatal in approximately 40 percent of cases when it is ingested into the gastrointestinal system. Inhalation anthrax can be lethal in as many as 90 percent of cases. Cutaneous infection, when anthrax comes into contact with the skin, is deadly in approximately one to 20 percent of cases if the patients get treatment early.

If the infection has time to develop inside of a person's body, the disease can become untreatable. People infected with anthrax receive antibiotics to treat the disease in its early stages. Anthrax can be transmitted from infected animals to people but is not transmissible between humans.