12 Feb 2022 11:02 am
The British authorities have registered three infections with the dangerous Lassa fever in England. There is now one death. The infected people are said to have traveled from West Africa. However, the risk of further spread is classified as very low.
The British health protection authority UKHSA reported on February 11 of a death after infection with the Lassa virus. The person died in a hospital in the English county of Bedfordshire. Another suspected case has now been officially confirmed. Therewith rose the total number of infections to three.
On Wednesday, the authorities had registered two cases of a disease similar to Ebola fever. The infected had therefore recently arrived from West Africa. The health authority announced that they were in close contact with the people who had contact with the infected. In general, the risk to the public has so far been classified as very low.
There have been at most eight cases of Lassa fever in the UK since 1980. These were exclusively imported infections. Most recently, two infections with the virus were registered in 2009.
Lassa fever is commonly found in West Africa. The pathogen is transmitted there by mice. Infection occurs through contact with animal excretions or when eating contaminated food. Lassa viruses can also be transmitted directly from person to person through droplets and body fluids. The incubation period is up to 21 days. During the course of the disease, symptoms similar to those of an Ebola infection appear. In addition to high fever, this also includes internal bleeding. There is currently no specific therapy.