Lassa fever – Nigeria
Lassa fever killed doctors at Amandu Bello hospital in Zaria, Nigeria. Transmission of Lassa virus to humans occurs most commonly through ingestion or inhalation from rodent’s waste.
The signs and symptoms of Lassa Fever is usually gradual. It starts with fever general weakness, and malaise. After a few days, headache, sore throat, muscle pain, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, cough, and abdominal pain may follow. Incubation between 7 to 10, maximum of 21 days.
Two deaths reported, a doctor and a health worker.
Photo: Lassa fever virus – Electron micrograph
Lassa fever, also known as Lassa hemorrhagic fever (LHF), is a type of viral hemorrhagic fever caused by the Lassa virus. Many of those infected by the virus do not develop symptoms but for 1 percent of those infected, death occurs in the first two weeks. The disease is usually initially spread to people via contact with the urine or feces of an infected mouse. Spread can then further continue between people.
There is no vaccine. Prevention requires isolating those who are infected and decreasing contact with mice.
Descriptions of the disease date from the 1950s. The virus was first described in 1969 from a case in the town of Lassa, in Borno State, Nigeria. Lassa fever is relatively common in West Africa.
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