Health authorities in Japan are on alert due to the spread of a serious illness known as streptococcal toxic shock syndrome (STSS), which has become popularly known as the ‘anus-eating virus’.

The condition, which has a mortality rate of up to 30%, recorded 941 cases in the first two months of 2024, a figure that threatens to surpass records from previous years.

STSS, whose focus of infection includes the throat, skin, anus and genitals, causes a series of severe symptoms.

Those infected may experience fever, difficulty breathing, kidney and liver dysfunction, mental confusion, low blood pressure, muscle pain and vomiting.

The disease has shown a greater prevalence in elderly people over 65 years of age, however, an increasing number of cases in people under 50 years of age is causing concern, including an alarming report of a teenager who had to have his hands and feet amputated due to toxic shock. .

Japan’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases (NIID) highlighted the complexity of the situation, admitting the lack of complete understanding of the virus’s actions and its aggressive form of infection.

“There is a lot we don’t know about how the virus works. Especially this fulminant, severe and sudden form of attack of streptococcus. We are also not yet in a position to explain”, he highlighted in a note.

To date, health authorities are still searching for effective strategies to combat the spread of this worrying condition.

With information from ND+


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