What Is A Lassa Fever?

May 01 11:39 2019 Print This Article

It is defined as a disorder in which there is a viral infection which is quite acute in nature. The cases have been seen for more than 10 years and the infection is endemic in nature. It is seen in the African countries. The human infections are also seen in the parts of world. The main animal host is mouse and is present in the African countries. The rodents are the source of protein for the people and the virus is transmitted by the feces as well as urine of animals. They are mainly present in the grain stores of areas.

What are the signs and symptoms of Lassa fever?

It includes the in apparent cases mainly. But in few cases it is quite complicated. It kills few thousand people per year. One third of death occurs due to the fever and it affects 10 to 16 percent of the cases. The average incubation period is 14 days. There is an illness which is quite acute in nature and involves many organs. The other symptoms are fever, swelling on the face as well as fatigue seen in the muscles. The other symptoms are the conjunctivitis as well as bleeding from the mucosa.

The involvement of other organs leads to nausea, vomiting as well as pain in the stomach. It can also lead to constipation, difficulty in swallowing as well as hepatitis. The cardio vascular system leads to hyper as well as hypo tension and it can also increase the heart rate. In the case of respiratory system one notices a pain in the chest, cough as well as pharyngitis and pleuritis. There can be involvement of the nervous system which can lead to meningitis, encephalitis as well as the hearing defects. They cannot be differentiated from the other infections like malaria, Ebola and Marburg. The excretion of the virus is seen in the urine and is seen for 3 to 9 weeks and in the semen it takes a quite longer time.

How Lassa fever can be diagnosed?

It includes the use of visual examination and a patient history. It includes many investigations like the ELISA test as well as Ig M antibody test. The courses of disease as well as complications are quite known. These tests have high sensitivity as well as specificity. It can also lead to low platelets as well as low white blood cell count. There is an increase in the level of enzyme known as aspartate amino transferase.

How Lassa fever can be treated?

The person must be isolated and the body fluids as well as excreta must be properly disposed off.

One can use ribavirin which has proved to be quite effective in the treatment of this disorder when it was given intravenously. It is not much effective when it is taken through the mouth. It is the drug which interferes with the division of RNA.

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