Tuesday March 26, 2019
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Doctor Contracts Ebola Disease From Congo, A dreaded Scenario: WHO

More than 2,900 people have been vaccinated against Ebola since the outbreak began.

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Ebola, UNICEF. congo, DNA
A Congolese health worker administers Ebola vaccine to a woman who had contact with an Ebola sufferer in the village of Mangina in North Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo

A doctor has become the first probable Ebola case in one of the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo’s “high insecurity zones” which are dogged by militia violence and hard to access, a scenario “we have all been dreading,” the WHO said on Friday.

Since the outbreak erupted on August 1, 103 confirmed and probable cases of Ebola have been identified in North Kivu and Ituri provinces, including 63 deaths, the health ministry said in an overnight update.

The doctor living in Oicha town in North Kivu has been re-hospitalised with Ebola symptoms after his wife was confirmed as having the disease when she traveled to the nearby city of Beni, said Dr Peter Salama, the World Health Organization’s head of emergency operations.

Ebola Congo
A Congolese health worker checks the temperature of a man before the launch of the vaccination campaign against the deadly Ebola virus near Mangina village, near the town of Beni in North Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo. VOA

Oicha is almost entirely surrounded by ADF Ugandan Islamist militia, there are “extremely serious security concerns,” he said. Aid workers, priests and government officials are held hostage in the area, he said.

The doctor’s initial test for Ebola — which causes vomiting, fever and diarrhea — had been negative, but fresh results are awaited, Salama told Reuters.

So far 97 of the doctor’s contacts who may have been exposed to the virus have been identified, and vaccination has begun in the town, he added.

“So for the first time really we have a confirmed case and contacts in an area of very high insecurity. It really was the problem we were anticipating and the problem at the same time that we were dreading,” Salama told a news briefing.

Ebola patient
A health care worker from the World Health Organization, left, gives an Ebola vaccination to a frontline aid worker who will then vaccinate people who might potentially have the virus, in Mbandaka, Congo. VOA

WHO and health experts reached Oicha with an armed escort by MONUSCO troops this week, he said, adding: “We know from that incident now in Oicha we are going to have to operate in some very complex environments due to security and access concerns.”

In a further worrying development, angry youth burned down a health centre in another village, where vaccinations were under way, after learning of a death from Ebola, Salama said.

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More than 2,900 people have been vaccinated against Ebola since the outbreak began, he said.

“We are at quite a pivotal moment in this outbreak in terms of the evolution of the outbreak epidemiologically and in terms of the response,” he said. (VOA)

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Health Experts Claim, Tuberculosis Can Reduce Chances Of Pregnancy

"It is also important that people thwart the factors that contribute to TB by making their living conditions more hygienic, improving immunity, and having better access to nutrition,"

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To combat the disease, it is essential that diagnostic facilities reach the farthest areas and people made aware of the consequences of contracting TB, said Rajkumar, Consultant Internal Medicine at New Delhi-based Indian Spinal Injuries Centre. Pixabay

Tuberculosis (TB) bacterium primarily affects the lungs, but can also spread and cause secondary infections to the uterus and even the fallopian tubes, which can reduce chances of pregnancy, health experts warned ahead of the World Tuberculosis Day that falls on March 24.

Usually caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) bacteria, TB is the top infectious killer worldwide, claiming around 4,400 lives a day.

When the bacteria attacks the uterus, it causes uterine tuberculosis (also known as pelvic TB) which mostly affects women during the child-bearing period and is usually diagnosed during an infertility check-up.

pregnancy
“Also, with medication, women can be helped to conceive through ART, either IVF of or IUI, where intervention can be done to repair the after-effects.” Pixabay

“Women are more often affected than males and due to uterine tuberculosis, two out of 10 females are unable to bear a child,” Shweta Goswami, Infertility Specialist at Jaypee Hospital in Noida, told IANS.

“In extreme cases, the uterine lining become so thin that it is unable to bear an implantation resulting in miscarriage,” she added.

Mtb bacteria is transported by blood to other organs including reproductive organs and causes infection in fallopian tubes, uterus or in endometrial lining.

“Tuberculosis has the ability to severely damage the fallopian tubes, if not treated at the initial stage.. it can further lead to serious health complications and also result in infertility,” Goswami said.

Symptoms of TB in uterus include irregular menstruation, pelvic pain, continuous discharge which is stained with blood or without blood with a foul smell and bleeding after intercourse.

A 2018 study by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) showed that over 50 per cent of female patients in India coming for IVF procedure have been reported to have genital TB.

The prevalence of genital TB among Indian women has increased from 19 per cent in 2011 to 30 per cent in 2015.

In over 95 per cent of the cases, the infection was found to affect the fallopian tubes, in 50 per cent the endometrium and 30 per cent the ovaries.

Moreover, nearly 75 per cent of women with genital TB were found to be infertile, and 50-60 per cent of women with infertility were found to have genital TB, the report stated.

“Treating uterine TB should be of the utmost importance as soon as it is detected. There is social stigma attached with TB which makes it difficult for people to come openly and talk about it,” said Shobha Gupta, Medical Director and IVF Specialist from Mother’s Lap IVF Centre, New Delhi.

There are combined tests which are used to investigate whether a person is suffering from TB which are a combination of AFB smear, culture and PCR for tuberculosis.

TB
When the bacteria attacks the uterus, it causes uterine tuberculosis (also known as pelvic TB) which mostly affects women during the child-bearing period and is usually diagnosed during an infertility check-up. Pixabay

“Also, with medication, women can be helped to conceive through ART, either IVF of or IUI, where intervention can be done to repair the after-effects,” Gupta noted.

According to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) ‘Global Tuberculosis Report 2018’, India accounted for 27 per cent of the 10 million people, who had developed TB in 2017, besides making up 32 per cent of global TB deaths among HIV-negative people and 27 per cent of combined TB deaths.

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To combat the disease, it is essential that diagnostic facilities reach the farthest areas and people made aware of the consequences of contracting TB, said Rajkumar, Consultant Internal Medicine at New Delhi-based Indian Spinal Injuries Centre.

“It is also important that people thwart the factors that contribute to TB by making their living conditions more hygienic, improving immunity, and having better access to nutrition,” he added. (IANS)