In week 1 to week 52 of 2022, no fewer than 189 deaths from Lassa fever were recorded out of 1,067 confirmed cases in 112 Local Government Areas in 27 states of the Federation.
The Lassa Fever Situation Report for Epi Week 52: December 26, 2022 – January 1, 2023, published by the Nigerian Center for Disease Control, NCDC, showed that there were 8,202 suspected cases, even when 63 health workers were among the victims.
The Report also noted that the number of reported deaths with a case fatality rate (CFR) of 17.7 percent was lower than the CFR for the same period in 2021 (20.0 percent).
According to the NCDC, the number of suspected cases increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2021. In other words, Nigeria recorded more suspected cases of Lassa fever towards the end of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. “In total by 2022, 27 states reported at least one confirmed case in 112 LGAs, and 72% of all confirmed Lassa fever cases were reported in Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi), while 23% were reported in 24 states with confirmed cases of Lassa fever.
The agency noted that of the 72 percent of confirmed cases, Ondo state reported 33 percent, Edo 25 percent and Bauchi 14 percent.
He said the predominant age group affected is 21-30 years old, while the male to female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.8
In week 52, the Agency noted that the number of new confirmed cases decreased from 17 in week 51 of 2022 to 12 cases. These were reported from the states of Edo, Ebonyi and Benue.
According to the Agency, no new healthcare workers were affected in week 52 of the report.
The Agency said the national multi-stakeholder, multi-stakeholder Lassa Fever Technical Working Group (TWG) continues to coordinate response activities at all levels.
Lassa fever is an acute animal-borne viral disease transmitted by the common African rat (Mastomys). It is endemic in parts of West Africa, including Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea, and Nigeria.
There are between 100,000 and 300,000 Lassa fever infections each year, with about 5,000 deaths.
Ribavirin, an antiviral drug, has been used successfully in patients with Lassa fever. It has been shown to be most effective when administered early in the disease.
According to the NCDC, a suspected case is anyone presenting with one or more of malaise, fever, headache, sore throat, cough, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, myalgia, chest pain, hearing loss, and a history of contact with rodent droppings or urine. , or contact with a probable or confirmed case of Lassa fever within 21 days of symptom onset or anyone with unexplained bleeding/bleeding.
The Agency stated that a confirmed case is any suspected case with laboratory confirmation, while a probable case is any suspected case that died or escaped without the collection of samples for laboratory testing. Primary transmission of Lassa virus from its host to humans can be prevented by avoiding contact with the vector.
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