Nigeria has recorded a total of 1,068 Lassa fever cases across 112 Local Government Areas in 28 states between January and September.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC) revealed this in its latest Lassa fever situation report for week 37, spanning 11-17 September.
NCDC in the report published on its website on Monday, said the disease has killed no fewer than 181 persons in the country.
With the current death toll, the agency noted that the case-fatality ratio of the outbreak stood at 16.9 per cent.
“Cumulatively from week one to week 37, 2023, 181 deaths have been reported with a case fatality rate of 16.9 per cent which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2022 (19.1 per cent),” It said.
“In total for 2023, 28 states have recorded at least one confirmed case across 112 Local Government Areas.”
According to NCDC, 75 per cent of all confirmed Lassa fever cases were reported from three states; Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi while 25 per cent were reported from 25 states with confirmed Lassa fever cases.
Of the 75 per cent confirmed cases, Ondo reported 35 per cent, Edo 29 per cent, and Bauchi 11 per cent.
“The predominant age group affected is 21-30 years (Range: one to 93 years, Median Age: 32 years). The male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.9.”
It said the suspected cases are now 7,352, indicating an increase compared to that reported for the same period in 2022.
The NCDC noted that the national Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Technical Working Group(TWG) continues to coordinate the response activities at all levels.
Lassa fever is an acute viral hemorrhagic (excessive bleeding) illness transmitted to humans through contact with food or household items contaminated by infected rodents or contaminated persons.
Its symptoms include fever, headache, sore throat, general body weakness, cough, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, muscle pains, chest pain, and in severe cases, unexplainable bleeding from ears, eyes, nose, mouth, and other body openings.
Lassa fever remains a major public health challenge as poor environmental sanitation, poor awareness, and late presentation of cases are reported to fuel the epidemic in Nigeria.
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