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CMS Outbreak In Kassena -Nankana

2007-10-15 21:40:52
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A new strain of Cerebral Spinal Meningitis (CSM) has emerged, Dr Abdulai Forgor, a Principal Investigator and Head of CSM at the Navrongo Health Research Centre has said. He said the disease which he described as dangerous has already claimed some lives in neighbouring Burkina Faso, adding that four cases have been reported in the Kassena-Nankana District of the Upper East Region.

Dr Forgor said he has informed the District Health Management Team of the Kassena-Nankana District about the imminent outbreak of the disease.

He said immediate action needs to be taken to vaccinate the population to avoid a total outbreak of the disease reminding that the last CSM outbreak in 1997 killed many people in endemic areas of the northern regions.

Persons attacked by the disease die within hours if immediate medical attention is not provided.

Dr Forgor who was briefing members of the African Media and Malaria Research Network about the CSM situation in the district, said now that the dry season was about to set in, it was expedient that urgent action was taken to avert a looming disaster.

Transmission of the disease from person to person is by respiratory droplets or respiratory secretions.

The CSM bacteria, he said, invades the throat and stays there penetrating the blood and subsequently the brain.

The disease, according to him was more prevalent in the northern regions of Ghana because of their extreme climatic conditions such as harmattan which is dusty with low humidity and high temperatures in the day with very cold nights.

A contributory factor to CSM, Dr Forgor said, is overcrowding which must be avoided.

He said that some of the symptoms of the disease include sudden fever, severe headache, stiff neck, vomiting or an abnormal behaviour which such situation occurs, it is advisable to consult the doctor before it is too late.

Besides the northern regions, the new strain of CSM can occur in other parts of the country as a result of the changing weather pattern and overcrowded areas particularly in urban areas.

source: Times

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