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Friday December 03, 2021

Congo virus death toll rises to seven as teenager dies

August 09, 2019

A 15-year-old boy became the seventh victim of 2019 of the dreaded Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever (CCHF), commonly known as Congo virus, in Karachi after officials at Dr Ruth KM Pfau Civil Hospital Karachi (CHK) confirmed that the patient died due to complications of the disease at an isolation ward on Thursday.

“Fifteen-year-old Faizul Islam was brought to the emergency of the CHK with high-grade fever, bleeding from nose and mouth and other complications on Wednesday night. He was shifted to the Medical Unit III of the hospital on suspicion of having CCHF where he was given anti-viral drugs but he died due to multiple organ failure on Thursday noon,” said Dr Azizullah Dhiloo, an expert of infectious diseases at the CHK, while talking to The News.

Health officials said the teenager’s death on Thursday was the seventh death in the city of 2019 due to the tick-borne viral disease, adding that last month a 27-year-old man from the Landhi area had succumbed to the complications of Congo virus at a private hospital. The CCHF is a lethal viral infection that is transmitted to humans from animals, especially cattle and livestock. The patients of CCHF are kept in isolation wards to prevent other patients, doctors and paramedics from contracting the disease.

CHK officials said it was the fourth CCHF patient brought to the hospital in the current year. They added that last year, two patients had been brought with the symptoms of the viral disease, who were discharged after complete recovery.

Urging the people to exercise extreme caution while dealing with sacrificial animals, Dr Dhiloo said the teenage patient was brought to CHK very late when he was bleeding internally and externally due to complications of the disease. He advised the public to immediately shift patients to a tertiary-care hospital if they get fever, nausea, headache and fatigue after dealing with cattle or sacrificial animals.