The first signs of the pneumonic plague are fever, headache, weakness, and cough productive of bloody or watery sputum. The pneumonia progresses over 2 to 4 days and may cause septic shock and, without early treatment, death.
Person-to-person transmission of pneumonic plague occurs through respiratory droplets, which can only infect those who have face-to-face contact with the person who is ill.
There is no vaccine against plague but prophylactic antibiotic treatment for 7 days will protect persons who have had face-to-face contact with infected patients.
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