Dutch Woman Succumbs to Lethal Virus Contracted in Uganda

by Tanya Thomas on  July 12, 2008 at 11:50 AM Tropical Disease News   - G J E 4
A Dutch woman died on returning from her Ugandan holiday after contracting the contagious and deadly Marburg virus. The virus, which is similar to Ebola, causes heavy bleeding and hemorrhagic fever.
Dutch Woman Succumbs to Lethal Virus Contracted in Uganda
Dutch Woman Succumbs to Lethal Virus Contracted in Uganda

"The Dutch woman who contracted Marburg during her holiday in Uganda died last night at the Leiden University Medical Center," the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) said in a statement.

It was reported Thursday that about 100 people who may have had contact with the woman were under surveillance. RIVM said they had been asked to take their temperature regularly but none of them had yet reported any symptoms.

The woman, aged 40, visited a cave known for its large bat population when she was in Uganda, and RIVM said this was probably where she was infected.

She began experiencing symptoms a few days after her return, and on July 5 was hospitalized. When her condition worsened she was transferred to the Leiden center on July 7 and was "fully isolated," RIVM said.

The Marburg virus causes hemorrhagic fever, a rare syndrome that involves fever and bleeding. The disease is very rare but very serious and is contagious, being spread through body fluids.

"The chance of the virus spreading through the Netherlands is very small," RIVM said in a statement Thursday, while the Dutch news agency ANP said the contagious period lasted 21 days.

Source: AFP

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