Published Date: 2011-04-28 00:49:02
Subject: PRO/EAFR> Cholera, diarrhea and dysentery (02) - Somalia
Archive Number: 20110428.221508
CHOLERA, DIARRHEA AND DYSENTERY (02) - SOMALIA
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Wed 27 Apr 2011
Source: Gant Daily All Headline News (AHN) report [edited]
A medical facility in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, has received some 160 patients, mainly toddlers, after an outbreak of diarrhea, a medical officer said Wednesday [27 Apr 2011].
Dr. Lul Mohamoud Mohammed, a doctor at Mogadishu's Benadir hospital, said more than 85 percent of the patients with diarrhea are children under the age of 5.
Mohammed noted that most of the victims were brought from different parts of Mogadishu, although a small number came from the regions adjoining the seaside capital.
"After medical diagnosis, 160 cases of diarrhea have been confirmed, and medical staff are struggling to help the patients as much as they possibly can," she said. The physician said the start of the monsoon rains was the likely cause of the outbreak, warning people to refrain from drinking water in lagoons and others places. Mohammed said she has not had any reports of deaths from the disease.
Much of the country has endured a severe lack of seasonal rainfall for the past 3 years. Two weeks ago, at least 13 children under the age of 5 died of diarrhea, and dozens more were suffering from the disease, according to a health official in Afgoye, about 30 km southwest of the capital.
[Byline: Abdi Hajji Hussein]
[An increase in the number of children less than 5 years of age presenting with acute watery diarrhea in Mogadishu, Somalia has been highlighted in this report. These episodes of acute watery diarrhea are usually caused by viral infections like rotavirus and bacterial infections that are self-limiting, provided supportive therapy by way of rehydration (either using oral rehydration therapy or intravenous fluids) is administered promptly following the onset of illness. It is also critical in the long term that access to safe water is improved, as well as ensuring good food hygiene, personal hygiene and sanitation for controlling acute watery diarrhea outbreaks. Laboratory investigations are very critical in identifying the causal organisms as well as determining the antibiotic sensitivity patterns to guide treatment if administration of antibiotics is indicated.
A map showing the regions of Somalia can be accessed athttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Regions_of_Somalia, and the HealthMap/ProMED interactive map of the country can be seen athttp://healthmap.org/r/00aM. - Mod.JFW]