Nigeria records 30 new Lassa fever cases, 6 deaths

Director General of NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu addressing the press at the presentation of 15,000 COVID-19 test kits to NCDC by UNICEF in Abuja on Tuesday, Sept 29, 2020. [Twitter-@NCDCgov]

Thirty new cases of Lassa fever were recorded in seven states in one week, according to the latest report by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

The agency revealed in its Week 10 report that the cases were recorded in 15 local government areas between March 8 and March 14, 2021.

Edo recorded the highest number of cases with 14, followed by Ondo with seven, Kaduna with four, and Taraba with two. Ebonyi, Bauchi, and Plateau recorded one each.

Six deaths were also recorded in the period under review with three in Ondo, two in Kaduna, and one in Taraba.

Nigeria has now recorded 191 Lassa fever cases this year, with cases detected in 48 local government areas across 12 states.

Edo has recorded the highest number of cases with 87, followed by Ondo with 45, and Taraba with 18.

The three states have also recorded the highest number of deaths with 12 in Ondo, and 11 each in Edo and Taraba.

Lassa fever infection can happen through contact with excreta or urine of rodents; contact with a probable or confirmed Lassa fever case within a period of 21 days of onset of symptoms; or any person with inexplicable bleeding/hemorrhagia.

Symptoms of Lassa fever include malaise, fever, headache, sore throat, cough, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, myalgia, chest pain, and hearing loss.

The NCDC said last year a large epidemiological study being implemented in Nigeria and other West African countries is expected to contribute to Lassa fever vaccine development.

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