Human cases of Rift Valley fever in Uganda
In Uganda, Ugandan health authorities reported two confirmed cases of Rift Valley Fever (RVF) on July 27 and August 2, 2022, respectively, in Rubanda and Isingiro districts, both located in the southwest of the country, according to the World Health Organization.
- Rubanda’s index case is a 39-year-old female patient who presented to Kabale Regional Hospital on June 23, 2022 with fever, loss of appetite, joint pain and headache.
- The index case of Isingiro is a 27-year-old farmer whose illness began on July 24, 2022 with fever, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, abdominal pain, joint pain, difficulty breathing and to swallow, and unexplained nosebleeds. He was admitted to Mbarara Regional Reference Hospital where he died on July 29, 2022.
In both cases the Uganda Virus Research Institute confirmed RVF infection.
Reminders on the Rift Valley hemorrhagic fever :
Rift Valley fever is a major zoonosis caused by a virus of the genus Phlebovirus of the family of Bunyaviridae. The virus affects different animal species (buffaloes, camels, cattle, goats and sheep) in which early epizootics are usually manifested by a wave of unexplained abortions and a drop in milk production.
It can be transmitted to humans:
- either by direct contact with animal blood or bodily fluids during slaughter or ingestion of meat or milk from contaminated animals;
- or indirectly by arthropod bites, in particular by arthropods of the genus Aedes.
The mild form of Rift Valley fever is the most common form in humans. It occurs after an incubation of 2 to 6 days, and manifests as a flu-like syndrome (fever, myalgia, arthralgia and headache) which lasts 4 to 7 days.
In severe forms we can observe:
- An ocular form (0.5 to 2%) with retinal lesions that result in decreased vision or visual discomfort. The disease can heal spontaneously without leaving sequelae or causing a permanent decrease in their visual acuity.
- Meningoencephalitis (less than 1%) with common serious neurological complications.
- A hemorrhagic form (less than 1%): 2 to 4 days after the onset of the disease, the patient shows signs of severe liver damage with jaundice. Hemorrhagic phenomena then appear: vomiting of blood, blood in the stool, purpura or bruises (caused by internal skin bleeding), bleeding from the nose or gums, gynecological hemorrhages. The case fatality rate for this hemorrhagic syndrome is high and is around 50%. Death usually occurs three to six days after the onset of symptoms.
Source : News about the epidemic today.
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