Published Date: 2005-08-03 23:50:00
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Streptococcus suis, porcine, human - China (05)
Archive Number: 20050803.2262
STREPTOCOCCUS SUIS, PORCINE, HUMAN - CHINA (05)
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Date: Wed 3 Aug 2005
From: Marianne Hopp <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Source: WHO Outbreak Reports [edited]
Outbreak associated with _Streptococcus suis_ in pigs in China
To date, the Ministry of Health in China has reported 206 cases of
human disease associated with an outbreak of _Streptococcus suis_ in
pigs. Of these human cases, 38 have been fatal. As reported by China,
18 patients are critically ill.
Virtually all cases have occurred in Sichuan Province, where
infections with _S. suis_ have been detected in pigs in a concurrent
outbreak. The province has one of the largest pig populations in
Investigation and containment of the outbreak have been given high
priority by Chinese authorities. The country's ministries of health
and agriculture are working in close collaboration, and WHO and FAO
are being promptly informed of new developments.
Investigations conducted by Chinese epidemiologists indicate that the
1st human cases occurred at the end of June 2005 in Ziyang City,
Sichuan Province. From 24 Jun through 21 Jul 2005, the authorities
reported 20 cases of illness of unknown cause admitted to 3 hospitals
in that city. WHO was officially informed of the outbreak on 22 Jul
2005, at which time, 20 cases and 9 deaths had been reported.
Cases have since been reported in 11 prefectures in Sichuan Province.
Most cases reported have occurred in adult male farmers. Information
reported to WHO suggests that close contact with diseased or dead
pigs is the principal source of human infection.
Symptoms reported by local clinicians include high fever, malaise,
nausea, and vomiting, followed by meningitis, subcutaneous
hemorrhage, toxic shock, and coma in severe cases. The incubation
period is short, and disease progression is rapid.
Local experts are conducing active searches for further cases. To
date, Chinese authorities say they have found no evidence of
The outbreak in humans has some unusual features and is being closely
followed by WHO. Diagnostic testing to further characterize the
causative agent is recommended as an essential part of ongoing
efforts to understand this outbreak, ensure its rapid containment,
and prevent further deaths.
[This is the 1st WHO outbreak report regarding this cluster, and, of
note, the report specifically mentioned meningitis as a manifestation
of infection. Meningitis has been, in the past, a common
manifestation of human infection with _S. suis_. - Mod.LL]