THE SCURFY DISEASE ("MOUTH-ROT", "SAILOR'S BANE")

SYMPTOMS - EFFECTS - CURE/PREVENTION - VECTOR/CAUSE

Scurfy is an unpleasant disease that affects people who do not have enough fresh fruit and vegetables to eat. This is often the case with sailors, hence the name “Sailor’s Bane”, though it is also known in the Kuglimz lands as "Lor’ang’urg" (lit. “winter weakness) and further north where the winters are long and cold. It can be fatal if left untreated.

Symptoms
. A Scurfy victim will first feel lethargic and develop joint ache. His body will develop bruised marks as though he had been beaten, though no one had struck him. A reddish rash appears over certain areas of the body, particularly the limbs and back. After a time, these rash marks become small oozy beals (infected sores), spreading over the body. The eyes become sunken and eyesight becomes weaker. Fainting spells occur and violent flux is very common. Return to the top

Effects. Old wounds, long since scarred over, will break open and bleed profusely. Breathing becomes difficult and the lungs are weakened. The teeth loosen and fall out and the gums bleed and develop foul-smelling, putrid growths, which cause the most abominable breath imaginable. It becomes difficult to eat and if not treated, the victim will almost certainly die.

The victims also show the signs of extreme sensitivity to the point of madness. Strong men weep like infants when upset, or react in violent fashion to sudden noises or strong aromas. Often the victim will be stricken down with an intense desire for home and suffer grievously from Black Dog, a deep melancholy.
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Cure/Prevention. The cure is extremely simple and most efficacious. It is now known that the juice of the Aeruillin lymmon produces a near miraculous cure, with even the sickest victims being well enough to return to duty within six to seven days time. Waterberries and redberries were also helpful. In the Northlands, the Kuglimz make a brew from the leaves of the juk’lan shrub, which is marvelously effective and has become a major trade item in recent years. Since the juk’lan is an evergreen the leaves are available year-round, which is not the case with waterberries or lymmon fruit. The drink is known humorously as “Sailor’s Cha”; there is usually a certain amount of good-natured mockery at the drinker’s expense, but it does work extremely well. One clever captain combined this brew with lymmon juice and foridite and found the results to show such dramatic improvement that this is now commonly done when lymmon juice is available. Some captains require that their entire crew drink juk’lan brew, symptoms or not, since it prevents the disease from gaining a foothold in the first place.

It is not known whether other races suffer from this beyond humans, but there are no reported occurences of it. However, it must be mentioned that this disease may be mistaken for other disorders such as brain fever, the strangling, groin rot (the "other" Sailor's Bane) madness, mortification or some variant of tetters and so on, since there are so many possible symptoms and not all of them may be apparent at first.
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Vector/Cause. The most common cause seems to be a deficiency in diet of fresh fruits and vegetables, though it has been observed that symptoms worsen when eating such foods as pinnip livers (a common item in sailor diets) and, strangely enough, even certain vegetables such as the carroot. It is recommended by healers that sailors avoid these foods. Northern tribes, too, report that eating animal livers does tend to worsen the disease. It is suggested by some that the excess of bile in the liver may contribute to this problem.
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Information provided by Alysse the Likely View Profile