Thursday, January 14, 2016

10 Important Things To Know To Help You From Lassa Fever

Lassa fever is one of the different haemorrhagic fevers that affect and could to immediate death of a person. Other haemorrhagic fevers are Ebola Virus Disease 

(EVD), Dengue and Yellow fever.
Some of the symptoms of haemorrhagic fever are high
fever, serious headache and bleeding from the pores of the body parts which are all characterised by high fatality.
1. Brief history of Lassa disease
Lassa fever is endemic in Nigeria. It was first  discovered in a town called Lassa in Borno state in 1969. It was from the name of the town that the disease got its name.
2. Case
In disease terminology, a case is a person who has a disease and at the same can spread the disease to other people who do not have the disease. A case could either be suspected or confirmed.
3. Suspected case and Index case
This is a case that is characterised by gradual onset of fever, headache, malaise, myalgia, cough, pharyngitis, vomiting and retrosternal pain. Index case is the person that first gets the disease. He is also known as primary case.
4. Confirmed case
A suspected case that is laboratory-confirmed or epidemiologically linked to a laboratory-confirmed case or outbreak.
5. Information from the Ministry of Health
According to a release by the Ministry of Health recently, in the last 6 weeks, Nigeria has been experiencing Lassa fever (LF) outbreak which has so far affected more than 8 states. The States affected include Bauchi, Nassarawa, Niger, Taraba, Kano, Rivers, Edo and Oyo States. The total number of suspected cases so far reported is 76 with 35 deaths, and a Case Fatality Rate (CFR) of 46%. Our laboratories have confirmed 14 cases, indicative of a new episode of Lassa fever outbreak.
Update on the Lassa fever outbreak as of yesterday, Wednesday, January 13 that a person was confirmed in the National Hospital in Abuja, the previous reports that that Lassa fever has claimed 41 lives from 93 reported cases in 10 states of the country. The number of the suspected cases also rose from 86 last week to 93.
6. Latest information
Twelve states have so far been affected The States affected include Bauchi, Nasarawa, Niger, Taraba, Kano, Rivers, Edo, Plateau, Gombe, Abuja, Lagos and Oyo states in addition to Edo where a person died last week and Imo state with reported cases.
7. Incubation period
The incubation period of a disease is the time it takes a disease to manifest and show its different symptoms if someone contacts it. For Lassa fever, the incubation period is 21 days. Therefore, if a person is suspected to have the disease, he will be put in an isolation room for 21 days in order to confirm if he/she has the disease.
 8. Medical presentation and symptoms of Lassa fever
These include: High fever;serious headache; pains in the chest region of the body; dry and sore throat; continuous stooling and vomiting; in severe situations, there is bleeding from the mouth, nose and vagina and then death results in later stages.
9. Avoiding getting the disease/mode of transmission
Rodents and rats are the main vector of the disease. Someone can also be infected from the fluid or blood of an infected person.
10. Other preventive measures
People should ensure their food is properly covered, either cooked or uncooked. Rodenticides  should be used to kill rats, while the bush around the home should be cleared regularly. The windows and doors of the hoiuse should be closed especially when evening comes.
Any body who shows the given symptoms above should report to the hospital immediately in order to prevent orders from coming up with the  disease.
In addition medical personnel should wear protective gloves and mask when treating people who are infected with the disease. All efforts should be geared towards maintaining a general home and environmental cleanliness.