Health officials release additional info on anthrax case

Health officials in Minnesota have released more information about a man who was sickened by inhaling anthrax that he acquired from the natural environment.
The state Department of Health said Friday that the man had a prior chronic lung condition that could have made him more susceptible to infection with anthrax, the Associated Press reports.
Officials say that the man in his 60s also had multiple exposures to animal and soil products. The department said earlier this month that the man was hospitalized in Minnesota after traveling through multiple western states where anthrax is known to be in the soil and to have caused animal infections. The man is now recovering.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the case because anthrax can be used in terrorism, but found that there was no evidence of a criminal or terrorism act, according to the AP.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, humans can become infected with anthrax by handling products from infected animals or by breathing in spores of anthrax from infected animal products like wool. Humans may also become infected with gastrointestinal anthrax by eating undercooked meat from infected animals.
Anthrax is treated differently depending on if the victim is showing symptoms. Patients who have been exposed but who are not yet sick are treated with antibiotics and the anthrax vaccine to prevent infection. If a person becomes infected with anthrax, the course of treatment includes 60 days of antibiotics.