Diphtheria bacteria spread from person to person, usually through respiratory droplets, like from coughing or sneezing. People can also get sick from touching infected open sores or ulcers. Those at increased risk of getting sick include:
- People in the same household
- People with a history of frequent, close contact with the patient
- People directly exposed to secretions from the suspected infection site (e.g., mouth, skin) of the patient
Diphtheria is a reportable disease in Oklahoma.