Leptospirosis outbreak in Acrelândia, Acre State, Brazil

Health authorities in Acrelândia (Acre State) have identified 18 cases of leptospirosis in the last 15 days. Another 10 possible cases are waiting for lab test results. Although there has been a noticeable increase in the rodent population, the exact source of this outbreak in still being investigated.

Leptospirosis is acquired through skin exposure (especially if there are open wounds) to water or damp soil that has been contaminated by an infected animal's urine. For travellers, this exposure usually occurs through recreational water activities, like whitewater rafting, swimming, kayaking or during floods. The risk of acquiring leptospirosis is higher after a period of heavy rainfall or flooding.Travellers can reduce the risk of exposure to leptospirosis during floods or heavy rainfall by avoiding contact with flood waters, e.g., wearing waterproof boots and other protective clothing.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Leptospirosis.

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