Paratyphoid fever

Enteric fever remains a major public health challenge - John A. Crump & Eric D. Mintz

Paratyphoid fever

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A New Clue to the Mystery Disease That Once Killed Most of Mexico

In the decades after Hernán Cortés invaded Mexico, one of the worst epidemics in human history swept through the new Spanish colony. A mysterious disease called “cocolitzli” appeared first in 1545 and then again in 1576, each time killing millions of the native population. “From morning to sunset,” wrote a Franciscan friar who witness the epidemic, “the priests did nothing else but carry the dead bodies and throw them into the ditches.”

In less than a century, the number of people living in Mexico fell from an estimated 20 million to 2 million. “It’s a massive population loss. Really, it’s impressive,” says Rodolfo Acuña-Soto, an epidemiologist at the National Autonomous University…

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Last Updated : Saturday, January 8, 2022