• Question: What is more deadly a virus or a bacteria?

    Asked by 2FAST4U to Ceri, Marikka, Matt, Rob, Sally on 18 Nov 2014.
    • Photo: Sally Cutler

      Sally Cutler answered on 18 Nov 2014:

      Both! Rabies has nearly a 100% mortality rate, but you may have months to a year post infection, whilst some of the bacteria have a shorter time to kill you! Some fungal infections have associated mortality rates equal to Ebola!

    • Photo: Ceri Dare

      Ceri Dare answered on 18 Nov 2014:

      Both of them can kill you – it depends on what you catch, where the infection is, how healthy you are, and so on.
      Spanish Flu which killed more people than World War One was a virus, but the Black Death was probably a bacteria.

    • Photo: Marikka Beecroft

      Marikka Beecroft answered on 19 Nov 2014:

      They are both equally as deadly. They both can cause horrible diseases that can kill people and in the past the a spanish flu (virus) killed an estimated 50-100 million people! Bubonic plague (bacterial) killed an estimated 75 to 200 million people! To put this in perspective there are currently 64.1 million people living in the UK. Both these diseases if they were around today could have killed the whole UK population easily!

    • Photo: Robert Hampson

      Robert Hampson answered on 19 Nov 2014:

      It really depends on the circumstances, the specific bacteria or virus in question, the healthcare available, the initial health of the person infected, etc.

      I’d be more worried about a virus, because they are harder to treat. Even with the problems of antibiotic resistance, the vast majority of bacteria can still be treated.