Nigeria's Ogun state reports first death from Lassa fever

February 15, 2016 11:56 pm 

LAGOS, Feb. 15 — Nigeria's southwestern state of Ogun has reported the first death from Lassa fever in the state in the worst outbreak of the disease in Nigeria in four years.

Babtunde Ipaye, state health commissioner, said a 28-year-old patient died suddenly at the Olabisi Onabanjo University Hospital after nine days of treatment.

The patient has been buried in line with the guidelines of the World Health Organization and Nigerian National Protocol on Lassa control and management, Ipaye said, adding that none of the 121 primary contacts with the patient has presented fever or any other symptoms suggestive of Lassa.

Lassa fever is an acute and often fatal viral disease, occurring mainly in West Africa. It is usually transmitted by contact with the saliva or excreta of rats in homes and food stores.

The latest outbreak in November 2015 is considered the worst in Nigeria in the past four years. The virus has killed 76 people and infected more than 200 others since the outbreak.

Nigerian authorities said they were capable of putting the virus under control, noting there is a high survival rate for those diagnosed early. (PNA/Xinhua)



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