Lassa fever kills 41 in Nigeria amid global coronavirus scare

Lassa fever kills 41 in Nigeria amid global coronavirus scare

Health

 

Forty-one people have died in Nigeria since an outbreak of the highly contagious Lassa fever earlier this month, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said amid the already scary coronavirus outbreak that has killed scores of people around the world.

Within the past week, the disease spread from nine to 19 states in the West African nation, while a total of 258 cases were confirmed between Jan. 1 and Jan. 26, including seven health workers, the centre said Tuesday.

Lassa fever is a viral haemorrhagic fever with symptoms including weakness, headaches, vomiting and muscle pains and a fatality rate of about 1%, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

The disease is endemic in parts of West Africa, where an estimated 100,000 to 300,000 infections of Lassa fever occur annually, with approximately 5,000 deaths, according to the U.S. Centres of Disease Control and Prevention.

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