Monday, January 23, 2017

Four Die Of Lassa Fever In Plateau

The Commissioner for Health in Plateau, Dr Kunden Deyin, said the state recorded four deaths, while laboratory tests confirmed five cases of Lassa fever since December 2016.

The commissioner told newsmen on Monday via telephone interview in Jos that 80 per cent of the mortality rate was due to late presentation of patients to health care facilities.

Deyin said “the mortality rate is as high as 80 per cent; the reason is that people are reporting very late, Lassa fever is best managed when patients start taking the drug within the first week of contracting the disease.

“The symptoms are similar to that of malaria such as nausea, body weakness and joint pains; it is at advanced stage that symptoms such as bleeding from the eyes, nose, mouth or private part occur.”

The commissioner, who said that getting the drug for the management of Lassa fever was difficult as it was not readily sold in the open market, added that the state was trying to access the drugs from the Federal Ministry of Health. He said the state ministry had, however, alerted healthcare workers in the state to be on alert and to have “high index of suspicion.”