ISIS militants reportedly being attacked by serious skin disease

Jihadi fighters are refusing medical treatment which has led to more outbreaks.

April 6, 2015 19:48
1 minute read.

An ISIS terrorist believed to be Hayat Boumeddiene, who is wanted by French authorities‏.. (photo credit: ARAB SOCIAL MEDIA)

Islamic State fighters are being attacked by a debilitating skin disease called leishmaniasis.

The disease, which is spread by sandflies, is quickly spreading thanks to pollution and poor hygiene conditions and there have been more than 100,000 cases reported, British media outlets reported earlier this week.

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The jihadi fighters are refusing medical treatment which has led to more outbreaks, according to the reports.

Medical centers have closed since medical staff have fled the violence making the spread of the disease more acute, according to the reports.

Dubbed “Rose of Jericho,” the disease is caused by protozoan parasites that belong to the genus Leishmania and is transmitted by the bite of female sand fly that bite infected rodents called rock hyraxes.

Cutaneous leishmaniasis is the most common form of leishmaniasis, while visceral leishmaniasis is a severe form in which the parasites have migrated to the vital organs. The infection appears as red sores (hence its nickname) on the skin a few weeks or months after being bitten by the sand fly that erupt weeks to months after the person affected is bitten by sand flies. The infection can also damage the liver and spleen and cause anemia. The sores can cause permanent, ugly scars if untreated.

Israel launched a program to fight the spread of the serious skin disease in 2012.  

Judy Siegel-Itzkovich contributed to this report.

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