The Commissioner for Health in Ogun State, Babatunde Ipaye, has said that the state has not recorded any case of Lassa Fever. He said this in Abeokuta, the state capital on Saturday.
“As at today, no single case of Lassa fever has been reported in Ogun State. But around us, border states, which include Lagos and Ondo states, we have records of Lassa fever cases.
“A case of one patient was discovered in Ijaiye-Ojokoro in Lagos State, a border community to Ogun State. The man was said to have come from Kano, but as at now he has been taken to Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH)where he is receiving treatment. We also have a record of similar discovery in Ondo State, which is our neighbour.
“Government has directed all its medical facilities to be at alert. We shall continue our surveillance. There is no need to panic,” he stated.
Ipaye urged the residents of the state to remain calm and maintain a clean environment. He warned them against putting food in open places to avoid contact with rats. He encouraged them to report cases of persons not responding to malaria treatment to health authorities.
Lagos State recorded its first case at the Ahmadiyyah Hospital,Ojokoro where a 25-year-old undergraduate student of the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria tested positive to the virus. The hospital has been placed under surveillance by the Lagos State Government.
Lassa Fever is an acute febrile illness with bleeding and death in severe cases, caused by the Lassa Fever virus with an incubation period of six to 21 days. About 80 per cent of human infections are asymptomatic, the remaining cases have severe multi-system disease, where the virus affects several organs in the body, such as the liver, spleen and kidneys. The onset of the disease is usually gradual, starting with fever, general weakness, and malaise followed by headache, sore throat, muscle pain, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, cough, and bleeding from mouth, nose, vagina or gastro-intestinal tract, and low blood pressure. The reservoir or host of the Lassa virus is the “multi-mammate rat” called Mastomys natalensis which has many breasts and lives in the bush and peri-residential areas.