Is a bacteria illness spread person to person.

It is rare except in countries where there is poor immunization. People require a booster every 10 years.

The bacteria incubate after 2-6 days and symptoms such as sore throat, fever and chills develop.
A foul odour to the breath is present.

It is difficult to swallow because of a leathery membrane over the tonsils and back of throat.

These bacteria also secrete a toxin that causes heart disease and paralyses.

Diphtheria is contagious for 10 days after the onset of fever.

Treatment with antibiotics is important and possibly administering an antitoxin.
It is prevented by routine immunization with Td (Tetanus Diptheria).

Recently there have been outbreaks in the former USSR after routine immunization had stopped a subsequent rebound rise in cases occurred..

Diphtheria links
Center for Disease Control CDC

http://www.emedicine.com/emerg/topic138.htm Health

Promotions and Education http://www.astdhpphe.org/infect/dip.html