Just days after finally beating another COVID outbreak, Melbourne has copped a fucking flesh-eating ulcer outbreak and honestly, throw me back in lockdown for the rest of my life.
The Buruli ulcer, until now, has only been found in coastal areas of Melbourne and regional Victoria (like the Mornington Peninsula), but has now been detected in Moonee Ponds, Essendon and Brunswick West.
I simply cannot stress enough just how much I do not love this for Melbourne. Nope. Get rid of it.
“This is the first non-coastal area in Victoria to be recognised as a potential area of risk, however, the risk of transmission in these areas is considered low,” Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said in a statement.
“All the identified cases had also travelled to known risk areas for buruli ulcer but genetic analysis of M. ulcerans isolated from them strongly supports a common link.”
However, there’s no known source of the ulcer so far, which is even more terrifying.
“The potential source of M. ulcerans in Melbourne’s inner north has not been established, although the bacteria were isolated from the faeces of a local possum.”
The Buruli ulcer is highly infectious and can cause painful and unsightly wounds as the ulcer’s bacteria quite literally eats away at your flesh.
If you’re in the area, Vic Health advises you to avoid insect bites (which I figure is how most of us try to live our lives every day), protect any open wounds and see a doctor for any persistent skin lesions or wounds.
The first sign to look out for with the Buruli ulcer is a painless lump that resembles an insect bite that may – or may not – be itchy.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go convince myself I don’t have a flesh-eating ulcer for a little bit.