Deaths due to Lassa fever appear to be increasing in Nigeria

An outbreak of Lassa fever includes 86 suspected cases, 40 (43 percent) of whom have died. The cases have occurred in the states of Bauchi, Nasarawa, Niger, Taraba, Kano, Plateau, Rivers, Edo, Oyo and Gombe.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Lassa Fever.

Advice For Travellers

Lassa fever usually is a mild disease, and the World Health Organization estimates that approximately 1 percent of the infected people will die from this infection. The high mortality rate in this report suggests that there are many unreported infections in the community. If all undiagnosed cases were included, the percent dying from their infection would decrease. The risk for the general traveller is low. Since this infection is transmitted to humans through contact with food or household items that are contaminated with rodent excreta, travellers should avoid contact with rats, especially rat urine and faeces.

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