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What You Don't Know About Can Drinks - Education - Nairaland

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What You Don't Know About Can Drinks by xcelentattitude(m): 11:09am On Jan 25, 2016
Public Service Information :Two people from the same family died on Wednesday in UNIVERSITY COLLEGE HOSPITAL,UCH-IBADAN NIGERIA. The test results showed that they died due to Leptospirosis. Infective Organism was on the can drink they drank without use of glasses/cups. The Cans were infected with dried urine of Mice containing Leptospirai. Can drinks are stored in warehouses & delivered to retail stores without cleaning. Study shows that the top of all beverage cans are more contaminated than public toilets. So clean Top end of Cans with water before opening & DO NOT put ur mouth to it..Please SHARE This msg; as I did with you. God bless you.
Re: What You Don't Know About Can Drinks by switcakes(f): 12:45am On Jan 26, 2016
Brief Analysis
Leptospirosis is a real illness, but this message contains highly improbable and misleading information. The Leptospirosis Information Center dismisses the warning as fake.

Detailed Analysis
The Leptospirosis Information Center dismisses this circulated warning as fake.

Exposure to urine from infected rats and other animals can indeed cause humans to contract leptospirosis. However, the chances of someone becoming infected in the manner described in this email are extremely slim.

An article about the warning on the LIC website notes:
First seen in 2002, these emails are entirely without substance, and have been used to send spam, transport viruses and simply to cause panic. The text of the email varies, but the most common version we've seen in 2005 is as follows:

[Copy of message similar to above example omitted]

The email evolves over time, and currently we are seeing a rise in circulation in the USA, referring to deaths in several states. If you receive one of these messages, please delete it and ignore what it says. You are more at risk of being hit by lightning while riding a camel than contracting leptospirosis from a commercial drinks container.
The LIC article also states that:
Leptospira require constant immersion in water to survive, and so drying of the surface for any length of time would permanently kill the bacteria. Given that drinking containers are non-porous, surface moisture dries very quickly and cannot possibly contaminate the contents.
The organisms that cause Leptospirosis can survive outside the body of the original host, but only if favourable environmental conditions are present. An article on the Michigan Department of Natural Resources website notes that:
The bacteria prefer moist, slightly alkaline soil, stagnant ponds, and low-flow, slow-moving, slightly alkaline streams. In these conditions the organism can survive for several weeks.
Given these facts, it is highly improbable that Leptospirosis bacteria could have survived on the surface of the can lids long enough to infect the alleged victim.

Furthermore, the email implies that rat urine is always toxic. According to the message, "rat urine contains toxic and deathly substances". This implication is misleading and inaccurate. Contact with urine from diseased rats can certainly lead to illness in humans. However, this is because the urine carries bacteria associated with a particular illness, not because the urine itself is in some way inherently toxic.

Re: What You Don't Know About Can Drinks by adeememman(m): 3:51am On Jan 26, 2016

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