• Sweden edition
 
Sweden warns heroin users after anthrax death

Sweden warns heroin users after anthrax death

Published: 09 Jul 2012 14:56 GMT+02:00
Updated: 09 Jul 2012 14:56 GMT+02:00

The warning, issued Monday by communicable disease control officials in Skåne in southern Sweden comes following the death of a 55-year-old Danish heroin user at a hospital in Copenhagen.

"Copenhagen and Malmö are very close so after the death in Denmark, we thought it best to warn heroin users here about the possible risks," Håkan Ringberg, an infectious disease doctor with Smittskydd Skåne, told The Local.

The Danish drug user died on Sunday after being treated for several days in a Copenhagen hospital. Traces of anthrax were subsequently found in the man's blood.

According to Ringberg, the infection can't spread between people and the warning is directed primarily at heroin users who inject the drug.

"The risk of infection [from anthrax] comes when one injects heroin," he said, adding his agency estimates there are "thousands" of heroin users in Sweden.

"We're advising users not to take heroin intravenously."

He also credited needle exchange programmes in southern Sweden for helping health authorities spread the word among users, but added that there are no signs as of yet that any anthrax-contaminated heroin has made its way to Sweden.

Earlier in the summer, there were three cases of anthrax in Germany, which was in turn connected to an earlier outbreak in Great Britain in 2010.

However, no connection has been found to tie the cases in Germany to the recent anthrax death in Denmark.

"Nothing has been established for sure. At this point, it's still a theory, but we are warning users nonetheless," said Ringberg.

Meanwhile, Swedish health authorities continue to maintain close contact with health officials in Denmark.

"We've had contact with our counterparts in Denmark and been informed of their continuing work to trace the contagion," Sofie Ivarsson, an epidemiologist with the Swedish Institute for Communicable Disease Control (Statens smittskyddsinstitut – SMI), told the TT news agency.

Swedish health officials have been on heightened alert since anthrax cases in German and as an on-call emergency lab standing by should any suspected anthrax cases be reported in Sweden.

David Landes/TT

Follow David Landes on Twitter

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

16:12 July 9, 2012 by cbgbg
Nobody becomes a junkie on purpose. It´s about time that metadon (even though it´s more addictive) is used in treatment to stop deaths and crime so that a more normal life can be lived
20:27 July 9, 2012 by Bender B Rodriquez
Methadone has been used the last 40 years in Sweden, so I have no clue what you mean by "It's about time"....
20:41 July 9, 2012 by cbgbg
Yes, it´s been used for the last 40 years but who the hell gets help with methadone or subetrex. Nobody. People are begging for help but do not get it . So get your facts right not from some poxy governmental survey but from people who suffer .
23:37 July 9, 2012 by Dazzler
"Nobody becomes a junkie on purpose."

That is just wrong and stupid. You know what you signed up for when you slammed a needle in your arm. I have zero pity for people of this caliber and even less patience. Get on with it and overdose.
00:11 July 10, 2012 by diegoveggie
sweden should warn heroin users about... heroin
16:51 July 11, 2012 by cbgbg
Dazzler

I really hope that your children or grandchildren never become junkies. I agree nobody is forced but it´s bloody difficult to give it up. So i really hope in the future that you don´t have to say to a member in your family "Get on with it and overdose"
17:42 July 17, 2012 by Achilles7
Why does society have so much sympathy for drug addicts? We must try to help them, they need support, they shouldn't be judged, etc. You become a drug addict because you deliberately, and selfishly, decide to start taking them in the first place. It's nobody's fault but your own.
Today's headlines
Late summer sun set to hit Sweden

Late summer sun set to hit Sweden

Forecasters have predicted sunshine across Sweden this week, with a warm front moving in from Russia and temperatures of up to 25C. READ  

International police hunt
Swedish killer arrested after European hunt
Photo: Police

Swedish killer arrested after European hunt

UPDATED: Police arrested a man on Tuesday afternoon after he went missing from a psychiatric ward in western Sweden at the weekend. The man had been convicted of murdering a five-year-old schoolgirl in 2003. READ  

Music
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Swedish singer Tove Lo. Photot: TT

The five best Swedish songs of the month

The summer may be (almost) over but the music will keep on playing here at The Local. Our resident music guru Paul Connolly will be selecting his top new Swedish tracks for us in a new monthly feature. READ  

Hedgehog pet craze sweeps Sweden

Hedgehog pet craze sweeps Sweden

African pygmy hedgehogs are being bought by growing numbers of Swedes, as a trend for keeping exotic pets sweeps the country, the Department for Animal Welfare and Health tells The Local. READ  

Poisonous mushrooms cause stir in Sweden
The mushroom in this picture is not the same as the one from the story. Photo: Shutterstock

Poisonous mushrooms cause stir in Sweden

A person selling freshly-picked mushrooms in Gothenburg has come under fire after it turned out the delicacies were not only poisonous but also hallucinogenic. READ  

Pirate Bay founder case starts in confusion

Pirate Bay founder case starts in confusion

The largest hacking case in Danish history began in confusion on Tuesday, after lawyers representing Swedish Pirate Bay co-founder Gottfrid Svartholm Warg accused the prosecution of "unreasonable" tactics. READ  

Swedfund joins H&M in Ethiopia expansion

Swedfund joins H&M in Ethiopia expansion

As H&M expands into Ethiopia, Sweden's state venture capital unit Swedfund has announced that it will back the clothing giant, in a move hoped to create more jobs for local women. READ  

Elections 2014
Social Democrats reveal election manifesto
Photo: TT

Social Democrats reveal election manifesto

UPDATED: Sweden's main opposition party the Social Democrats has revealed its election manifesto at a press conference at a high school in Stockholm, with a key focus on education and welfare benefits. READ  

Teen run over by train after 'shoplifting' chase

Teen run over by train after 'shoplifting' chase

A teenage boy is in a critical condition after he was hit by a passing metro train in Stockholm. The accident ground rail traffic to a halt, and has police suspecting attempted murder. READ  

Swimrun
Record win at Sweden's tough island race
Photo: Jakob Edholm/ÖTILLÖ14

Record win at Sweden's tough island race

Two Swedes crushed last year's course record at the Swimrun world championship in Stockholm's archipelago on Monday. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
National
Huge clear up underway after Skåne floods
Politics
Sweden's Alliance reveals full manifesto
Tech
Sweden's highest peak to lose title next year
Blog updates

02 September

America night (Blogweiser) »

" There was an event this weekend for the ‘Americans in Sweden’ Facebook group. I’m a member, and I brought my girls to the evening. The gathering was at a Boston-themed sportsbar in a mall. There were loads of screens, a bowling alley, a game room and a jumbotron. It was as good a place as any to..." READ »

 

25 August

Hit och dit, här och där (The Swedish Teacher) »

" Hej igen! A common challenge for Swedish language students are the location adverbs hit/här, dit/där, hem/hemma etc. Some of the location adverbs come in two versions. We should use one type of location adverb when we use a verb describes where we are, and we should use the other type of location adverb when we the verb..." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
How immigration became a key election issue
Society
Brit's life in Sweden becomes BBC radio show
Gallery
People-watching August 27
Gallery
Top ten false friends in Swedish
National
Roma advocate scoops Wallenberg prize
Society
Meet the man who made a Swedish store recall its high heels for kids
Business & Money
'How I came to run my own business in Sweden'
Politics
Expert explains why Sweden's election oozes uncertainty
National
City plays Schindler's List theme at Nazi rally
Society
For Stockholm Fashion Week, here's the A-Z of Swedish fashion
National
'Amnesiac' man avoids deportation for ten years
Gallery
Princess Estelle through the years
Business & Money
Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Business & Money
Five golden rules for the Swedish job hunt
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Gallery
People-watching August 22-24
National
Armed royal guards caught (very) drunk on the job
National
Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination
Gallery
Violent anti-Nazi demonstrations in Malmö
Society
A closer look at Sweden's five official minority languages
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

755
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se