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Japan Faces Rapid Spread of Dangerous STSS Infection

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Officials in Japan report that streptococcal toxic shock syndrome (STSS) is rapidly spreading in the country. It is a very dangerous bacterial infection. According to Japan’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases the number of STSS cases in Japan is increased. They have found 977 cases in 2024. This number is more than the number of cases found in 2023 as it was 941. On the other hand, only 395 cases were found in the US in 2024. This clearly shows that the number of STSS cases in Japan is two and a half times the number of cases found in the US.  

Streptococcus pyogenes release some toxins in the body and cause STSS. This Streptococcus pyogenes are also known as Group A Streptococcus. It affects human health very badly and commonly causes sore throat and skin infections.  Sometimes it can also cause blood, lung and flesh-eating infections.  

Experts have not found the reason why these infections are spreading rapidly and becoming more common. But they say we can prevent them.  

Chickenpox and influenza are some risk factors of severe GAS infection. They can increase the risk of GAS infections. But vaccination against varicella zoster virus and influenza can reduce the risk of this infection.  

Pregnant women or people who have open wounds should be very careful if they are in close contact with someone with a severe GAS infection. They should take antibiotics on time to prevent infection.  

The number of GAS cases has increased in many countries since 2022. It includes the UK, Ireland, France, the Netherlands and Sweden. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC) warns that age above 65, wounds on the skin and other health issues like diabetes are some risk factors as they increase the risk of GAS infection.  

This infection shows some symptoms such as fever, chills, muscle aches, nausea, and vomiting. It also causes high blood pressure that increases the risk of many serious health complications such as organ failure, increased heart rate and rapid breathing. Even though treatments are available, this infection is dangerous and cause death. The CDS says that it can cause death in 3 out of every 10 infected people.  

The number of STSS cases are rapidly increasing so that people should be very careful. They should go to the hospital if they have symptoms of this infection. Experts should also make some effective strategies to reduce this risk and spread this information to many people.  

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