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How to spread a water-plague:

 1 sabrina diamond, Fri, 22nd Mar '13 6:58:25 PM from in my belly... Relationship Status:
Alright. After quite a few months scouring several Twisted Tales comics (Terminated, to be exact) I had a gem of a story idea about a disease that spreads via village water supply in Tibet and some college students (tourists) are larking around in the village before everyone in the group starts succumbing to The Plague called Tibetan Muscle Deterioration, which strikes within days.

I need to somehow transfer that same disease from a village in Tibet to the main water supply of a city, which seems harder than expected seeing as I have little experience writing The Virus stories.

The college students are Amari Baker (and her overseas brother), Maria and Vivian Jones

If there are any other ways to spread this plague, I'll gladly listen to any other commentary

edited 22nd Mar '13 8:02:06 PM by sabrina_diamond

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 2 Major Tom, Fri, 22nd Mar '13 7:24:09 PM Relationship Status: Barbecuing
Eye'm the cutest!
The city is downstream from the Tibetan village.

Water-borne parasites follow the water. Where you shit it goes and even if the wastewater is treated before being sent back into the river or out into the storm drains the pathogen is likely to follow. Water-borne diseases are among the most virulent in the world, if not THE most virulent in the world. (Just look at the prevalence of malaria and cholera vs chicken pox and some forms of influenza. The first two are widespread wherever there is water especially untreated/unsanitized water.)
"Allah may guide their bullets, but Jesus helps those who aim down the sights."
 3 sabrina diamond, Sat, 23rd Mar '13 2:01:11 AM from in my belly... Relationship Status:
Great. I'm also going to get some local wildlife affected by the plague too and some more mayhem happening ;)
You are a Innocent Uke! Cute and sweet of all ukes! my profile
[up][up] Actually, malaria is spread by insect vector - namely, mosquitoes. Aside from that, Tom's pretty spot on about how virulent waterborne infections can be; with cholera and norovirus being the classic examples. Speaking of insect vectors, that could be an alternative solution to spreading the disease. Namely, the insects breed at a particular water source before they mature and spread the disease.

Back on the subject of waterborne infections, it might be worth a ponder figuring how you want your disease to work. How does Tibetan Muscle Deterioration cause muscle deterioration? Are the muscles breaking down? Why? How?

As can be seen by my examples, waterborne infections have a tendency to cause gastrointestinal problems - diarrhoea and vomiting (D&V) - which isn't all that surprising, since that's where the pathogens are introduced and frequently sit in the host's body. However, there are some viruses such as Hepatitis A that do regularly cause non-D&V related symptoms.

Something to consider is that some pathogens cause symptoms not by their presence alone but through the production of toxins (chemicals) that react with host cells, causing the latter to produce an inappropriate response.

In addition, there's a condition/symptom called "rhabdomyolysis" which is the rapid breakdown of (normally damaged) skeletal muscle. It has a variety of causes, some of which do include bacteria and viruses. Just food for thought, really.

Hope this helps and happy writing.
 5 Septimus Heap, Sat, 23rd Mar '13 6:00:43 AM from Zurich, Switzerland Relationship Status: Mu
A Wizard boy
A small note of pedantery: The Virus is about zombies and thing that turn you into One Of Them. It's not about real viruses.

To my understanding, something akin to poliomyelitis but with muscle cells and not nerve cells might do the trick.

 6 Major Tom, Sat, 23rd Mar '13 6:18:08 AM Relationship Status: Barbecuing
Eye'm the cutest!
Actually, malaria is spread by insect vector - namely, mosquitoes.

And the easiest way to combat mosquitoes is the remove the water from the equation. Drain standing water, treat existing water supplies and more. (Though you ultimately have to get rid of the mosquitoes water or no water.)

It's what we do to combat West Nile in Colorado. (In addition to going DEET happy and limited pesticides.) You can't do much about the rivers and lakes but you can do a lot about water pooling in roads or on roadsides, outdoor water collection and drainage and more. That method also helps counteract water-borne diseases.
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Total posts: 6

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