Four dead from leptospirosis, Ministry declares outbreak
January 29, 2019 4:50 pm
Four people have died from leptospirosis in the Central Division so far this year.
This has resulted in the Ministry of Health declaring an outbreak in the Division.
There have been 69 cases of leptospirosis in the Central Division from January 1st, with 18 people requiring admission to the CWM Hospital.
Majority of the cases are between the age group of 1-19 and 20-29.
Leptospirosis is a disease caused by bacteria that affects both humans and animals.
Humans get leptospirosis through contact with the urine of infected animals.
This often happens through contact with mud, water, or food contaminated with the urine of infected animals.
The Ministry says people who work with animals especially farmers are at higher risk of getting this disease, however the current outbreak in the Central Division is also affecting people who do non-animal related work.
It says recent heavy rain and flooding are likely to have contributed to the increase in cases.
Symptoms of leptospirosis includes high fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, nausea/vomiting, jaundice (yellow skin and/or eyes), red eyes, abdominal pain, diarrhea, cough, shortness of breath and rash
Without treatment, the disease can lead to kidney damage, meningitis, liver failure, respiratory distress, and even death.
Early treatment with antibiotics administered by a doctor is the key to preventing complications and deaths.