Lassa fever kills two in Lagos

Kuwait Times - - HEALTH & SCIENCE -

Two peo­ple in Lagos have died and a hun­dred med­i­cal work­ers have been placed un­der ob­ser­va­tion af­ter a flare-up of Lassa fever, a cousin of the deadly Ebola virus, of­fi­cials said yes­ter­day. Lagos Uni­ver­sity Teach­ing Hos­pi­tal said the two died this week af­ter be­ing ad­mit­ted for treat­ment. “Each of these two pa­tients pre­sented very late and died in spite of ef­forts to sal­vage them,” Pro­fes­sor Chris Bode, the hos­pi­tal’s chief med­i­cal di­rec­tor, said.

The first case was a 39-year-old preg­nant woman with a bleed­ing dis­or­der who died af­ter still­birth, he said. A post-mortem ex­am­i­na­tion had been con­ducted be­fore her Lassa fever sta­tus was con­firmed. “No less than 100 dif­fer­ent hos­pi­tal work­ers ex­posed to this in­dex case are cur­rently be­ing mon­i­tored,” he said. He said a doc­tor who took part in the au­topsy and was con­firmed with the dis­ease, was re­spond­ing to treat­ment. Bode said two other sus­pected cases brought to the hos­pi­tal were await­ing the re­sults of tests. He urged health work­ers to main­tain “a height­ened level of alert” and ob­serve ev­ery pre­cau­tion in han­dling sus­pected cases. Lassa fever, also known as Lassa hem­or­rhagic fever, be­longs to the same fam­ily as Mar­burg and Ebola, two deadly viruses that lead to in­fec­tions with fever, vom­it­ing and in worse case sce­nar­ios, hem­or­rhagic bleed­ing. Its name is from the town of Lassa in north­ern Nige­ria where it was first iden­ti­fied in 1969.

More than 100 peo­ple were killed last year in one of the na­tion’s worst out­breaks of the dis­ease, af­fect­ing 14 of the 36 states, in­clud­ing Lagos and the cap­i­tal Abuja. The virus is spread through con­tact with food or house­hold items con­tam­i­nated with rats’ urine or fae­ces or af­ter com­ing in di­rect con­tact with the bod­ily flu­ids of an in­fected per­son. Nige­ria’s Centre for Dis­ease Con­trol (CDC) in Abuja con­firmed the out­break. “We have put health work­ers on the alert and are work­ing with the au­thor­i­ties in Lagos to con­tain its spread,” an of­fi­cial said.—AFP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Kuwait

© PressReader. All rights reserved.