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INTRODUCTION
Lassa fever was first described in the 1950s but was identified in 1969. As the name imply the disease was first discovered in a community called Lassa, in Bornu State, Nigeria. It is a haemorrhagic (bleeding) fever that is similar to Ebola, but caused by the lassa virus being transmitted by multi-mammate rats called Mastomys natalensis. The rats are called “multi-mammate” because they have more breasts than other house rats. The virus is widespread in West Africa: particularly in Benin, Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria. Lassa fever is deadly if not cured at its early stage. It is associated with dirty and over-populated environments.
EARLY SYMPTOMS

  • High fever
  • General body weakness
  • Sore throats
  • Cough
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Proteinurea
  • Back pains
  • Tremor

LATE SYMPTOMS

  • Bleeding from the nose, mouth, lungs, vagina, skin, intestine etc.
  • Rashes
  • Swellings of the eyes, face and genitalia
  • Red/pink eyes
  • Hearing lose (in about 25% cases)
  • Encephalitis (inflammation of the brain cells)
  • Low blood pressure

TRANSMISSION/PROGNOSIS

  • Contact with the urine, faeces, and blood of an infected multimammate rats (rodents)
  • Human to human transmission: contact with an infected person
  • Contact with an infected hospital equipment
  • Non professional burial rights of a lassa fever body

INCUBATION PERIOD
6 – 21 Days
PREVENTION

  • Kill all rats within or around the house and block their access points into the house
  • Improve on personal and domestic hygiene in and around the house
  • Store food items in sealed containers not accessible to rodents
  • Dispose all garbage (dust bin) in time and far away from home
  • Avoid unprotected contacts with bodily fluids of sick patients of unknown cause
  • Rigorous contact tracings are necessary in endemic areas.
  • Safe injection and burial practice
  • Basic hand hygiene, hand wash, or using hand sanitizers
  • Use of personal protective equipment’s in a vulnerable area

TREATMENT

  • Early supportive care with rehydration
  • Symptomatic treatment
  • Ribavirin 200mg

AFFECTED STATES

  • Bauchi
  • Gombe
  • Delta
  • Plateau
  • Rivers

LASSA FEVER CALL CENTERS
08031571667
08093810105
08031571667
08163215251
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LASSA FEVER: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE DISEASE

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