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Buruli Ulcer
A rare skin infection acquired in Benin, Cote d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Gabon, Ghana and Uganda.

It is similar to tuberculosis bacteria.

It is spread through scratches or cuts on the skin.

It occurs in women and children living near wetlands or rivers in tropical/subtropical areas.

Risk to travelers is low.

The BCG vaccine gives some short-term immunity against the Buruli bacteria.


Symptoms start as a painless but itchy skin swelling which turns to a destructive ulcer after 4-8 weeks.

The ulcer can remain, disappear or cause local destruction.

Treatment with drugs is unsatisfactory and surgery with skin grafting is often done.

Buruli Ulcer Links
World Health Organization WHO
http://www.who.int/gtb-buruli/
Cochrane SkinGroup http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/~muzd/protocols/proto36AntiMyc.htm http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/~muzd/protocols/proto41BCGBuruli.htm