Sunday, December 18, 2016

Malaysia's 8th Zika case is a senior citizen from PJ

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PETALING JAYA: A 67-year-old man here is the latest confirmed case of Zika infection in the country, the eighth such case recorded.
On Dec 14, the Health Ministry received a Zika infection report detected through the Zika virus surveillance system.
According to health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, the patient had sought treatment at Tangling Clinic on Nov 30 after suffering from fever, nausea and diarrhoea for two days.
The blood-screening test did not have any significant findings, with the patient receiving symptomatic treatment and advised to return if the symptoms worsened.
On Dec 1, the patient returned with joint and muscle pain.
A test for dengue proved negative and the case was reported to the district health office for suspected dengue, with the patient requested to return each day to monitor blood test results.
"As the test was negative despite the patient exhibiting dengue symptoms, blood samples were taken and sent to the National Public Health Laboratory (MKAK) in Hospital Sungai Buloh for other flavivirus tests, in line with the national flavivirus screening protocol," said Dr Noor Hisham in a statement.
On Dec 9, MKAK announced a positive result for Zika and the blood sample was sent to the Institute for Medical Research (IMR) for verification, along with a urine sample.
Less than a week later, IMR confirmed that the urine sample also tested positive for Zika on Dec 14, making it the eighth case since Sept 1.
"The Zika virus surveillance system monitoring by MKAK and IMR from June 2015 to Dec 10 2016 shows that test results for 1,633 blood samples and urine samples from patients displaying Zika virus symptoms are negative," Dr Noor Hisham added.
The patient's travel history from Nov 14-28 showed that he was in and around Kuala Lumpur, Shah Alam and Perak.
His closest family members have undergone checks, with blood and urine samples taken for a Zika screening test as soon as the results were known.
Control measures involving the destruction of breeding areas, larviciding, health education and fogging at his place of residence, as well as other visited areas, took place on Dec 11.
In addition, Active Case Detection is underway at his housing area to verify if any other residents are experiencing Zika symptoms.
Dr Noor Hisham advised Malaysians to ensure that their surroundings are always clean and free from Aedes mosquito breeding grounds.
Measures to prevent mosquito bites, such as using repellent or wearing bright clothing that covers up most of the body, should also be practised.
"Those experiencing Zika symptoms such as fevers, rashes, headaches, muscle pain and conjunctivitis, and have either visited countries with endemic Zika or been in contact with a Zika patient, have to see a doctor immediately," he added.

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