Leptospirosis outbreak in Rio Branco, Acre, Brazil

Due to torrential rains, the Acre River flooded, and the municipality of Rio Branco has reported at lease 200 suspected cases of leptospirosis in the last 2 months.

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 or during floods. The risk of acquiring leptospirosis is higher after a period of heavy rainfall. Travellers can reduce the risk of exposure to leptospirosis during floods or heavy rainfall by avoiding contact with flood waters, or by wearing waterproof boots and other protective clothing.

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