Odor Originating from Infectious Diseases

Scarlet Fever


Scarlet fever is caused by an infection with group A streptococcus bacteria. The bacteria make a toxin (poison) that can cause the scarlet-colored rash from which this illness gets its name. A foul breath or a cadaveric odor may be experienced in the malignant form of this disease.



Yellow Fever


Yellow fever is a viral disease transmitted between humans by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Yellow fever can cause bleeding (hemorrhaging), heart, liver, kidney and digestive tract problem. Yellow fever produces a butcher shop smell.





Smallpox is caused by infection with variola virus. People experience fever, backache, nausea, vomiting, and a bit later tiny red spots appear all over the body. The spots turn into blisters, called pustules. These boils fill up with pus. Sometimes the lesions spread down the throat, constricting breathing. Often they infest the eyes, the mouth, the throat, the anus. When lesions blacken and peel off, they emit a sweet and pungent odor like rotten flesh known as the "smallpox smell."



Typhoid Fever


Typhoid fever is a bacterial infection in the intestinal tract and sometimes the bloodstream. The typhoid bacteria causing typhoid is a human strain of Salmonella (Salmonella typhi.) The bacteria are spread by eating or drinking water or foods contaminated by feces from the infected individual. Typhoid fever produce a musty smell or baked bread from the patient.





Diphtheria is a highly contagious bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Corynebacterium diphtheria. The diphtheria toxins attack the normal tissue of the throat, as the tissue dies, the toxins create a grayish cover on the throat. The patient has difficulty talking and breathing. The breath may develop putrid odor. Some people with diphtheria may have a sickening sweet smell.





Pediculosis is an infestation of lice on the hairy parts of humans. It is easily transmitted from person to person during direct contact: Head lice is usually transmitted in school setting. Crab lice could be sexually transmitted. Body lice infestation can happen in crowded, unhealthy environment where clothing is constantly changed or laundered. An offensive odor originates from matting of hair due to the oozing of pus and crusted bacterial lesion.





Scrofula is a tuberculous the skin on the neck, caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis in adults and by Mycobacterium scrofulaceum or Mycobacterium avium in children. The bacteria spreads throughout the body, the lymph nodes in the neck and other parts of the body may develop swelling. The lymph nodes may become ulcerated, producing draining sores. Stale beer.

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