There was a shadow in the lungs. "It does not look good," the doctors of the cantonal Winterthur hospital told Walter Bachmann of Altikon. There was a suspicion of lung cancer. The champion of peasants and forests, 60 years of age, from the country of wine, landed under his feet. "I did not see any future at a time, suddenly everything was down." Bachmann had smoked for almost 40 years. Therefore, it seemed very plausible that he could have lung cancer. Four years ago. But the feelings of this moment are still present. He still remembers how he felt at home just hours before that day. After a shower, the bed was let down. "It was completely done," says Bachmann. When he had a fever of 40 degrees, he felt severe chest pain, and barely able to breathe, he called his family doctor. He advised him to go to the hospital immediately, which Bachmann did.
Very uncertain time
Starting here began a long period of uncertainty for him and his wife. An investigation followed the other. And even if it did not find cancer cells, the suspicion of lung cancer could never be completely eliminated. "We have never cried as much as this month," remembers Bachmann Beatrice's wife.
"We have never cried as much as this month."Beatrice Bachmann
After these four weeks, finally, the news is welcome: It is not a lung cancer, but a pneumonia caused by the plague of the hare, which is curable. "We are totally relieved when we hear this and thank God for that," says Beatrice Bachmann. To find such a rare disease it takes time, he says, looking back. "We can rejoice, in the KSW, a" Dr. House & # 39; which has found the pest pest bacterium ».
Her husband received high dose antibiotics for several days; Just a short time later it was much better. There were no lasting damages. Bachmann has recovered completely from his illness. In addition, he could gain something positive from the difficult days: "The infection now makes me immune to anger forever."
Hasenkot as a cause?
But how had Bachmann infected? It is clear that even some pathogens can trigger an illness, that the incubation period is usually only a few days and that in principle many pathways of infection are conceivable (see also the following box). Weinländer's own farmer is supposed to have inhaled the bacteria on the finest dust particles, which were stirred by barley straw bales. These bullets may have been contaminated with rabbit or mouse feces.
"Why can not we say with certainty that there are a number of cases of rage in the districts of Winterthur and Andelfingen above the average."Nadia Schürch, Spiez Laboratory
Later, Walter Bachmann learned that a similar drama was happening on a farm half a million away. "A boy of nine years fell ill at the same time as I did it with the plague of hare".
KSW has dealt with many cases
The fact that in the Andelfingen and Winterthur districts there is a connection point for many years with an increased risk of contagion for rabies plague (see map below) is also shown in the data published by L & # 39; cantonal Winterthur hospital compared to the "Landbote". "Since 2007, KSW Infectious Diseases have treated 29 cases," says Urs Karrer, chief physician of the KSW Medical Polyclinic and specialist in tularemia, as the plague of hares in the jargon is called.
More often, patients with the plague of rabies in KSW had symptoms of flu like fever, sweating and headache, "followed by a severe local inflammation, lymph nodes." In some cases, the affected lymph node had to be eliminated surgically, says Karrer. The patients were treated partly ambulatory and, in part, as an internal patient. However, severe cases of rage were also frequently recorded in KSW (43 percent of all cases). Patients suffered high fever, chills, headaches and pneumonia. For intravenous antibiotic therapy, they stayed for up to seven days at the hospital. Karrer admits that sometimes it may take some time, "until the diagnosis is made and the correct treatment is started." Although the plague of hare in Switzerland is not nearly mortal for human beings, it is anything that is harmless. "In 2012, we looked after a patient with a very difficult story," recalls Karrer. "Probably this patient would have died of tularemia without proper treatment."
Infection often on ticks
For a long time, it was assumed that transmission to humans was produced mainly through direct or indirect contact with sick animals (rabbits, mice, etc.). In the past, most were hunters or farmers affected. However, a recent study shows that ticks are the most important source of infection in Switzerland. Their bites account for about 60% of the cases.
Researchers believe that an increase in rabies disease may be related to global warming and altered recreational behavior. "But why there are a number of cases of rage in the districts of Winterthur and Andelfingen, we can not say with certainty," explains Nadia Schürch, head of Bacteriology at the Spiez Laboratory. "One hypothesis, for example, is that ticks find better conditions in these areas than in other places." (Landbote)
Created: 20.11.2018, 16:26 clock