Published Date: 2012-07-20 13:47:58
Subject: PRO/EDR> Chikungunya (08): Sierra Leone, RFI
Archive Number: 20120720.1209257
CHIKUNGUNYA (08): SIERRA LEONE, REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Fri 20 Jul 2012
From: Rashid Ansumana <email@example.com> [edited]
I write to report the reemergence of chikungunya [virus disease] in Sierra Leone.
After 34 years since it was last reported in 1978, chikungunya has resurfaced in Sierra Leone in the city of Bo. This comes exactly 8 years after it resurfaced in Kenya in 2004.
25 febrile patients with polyathragia, reported to be severe in the elderly, are IgM positive for chikungunya virus (CHIKV). The chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a single-stranded RNA virus belonging to the Simliki virus antigenic complex with similar clinical features with o'nyong'nyong virus, Ross River virus and the viruses that cause eastern equine encephalitis and western equine encephalitis.
Positive patient samples were also tested for dengue and o'nyong'nyong, and they were negative.
This new ripple has a lot of implications, since Sierra Leone is a resource-poor country.
Andrea Covington, MSPH (MD Student, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, USA)
Mercy Hospital Research Laboratory, Sierra Leone
Rashid Ansumana (PhD Student, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, UK)
Researcher, Mercy Hospital Research Laboratory, Sierra Leone
Lecturer Njala University Sierra Leone.
[ProMED-mail thanks Rashid Ansumana and Andrea Covington for sending in this report. Rashid Ansumana indicated that this finding is part of his PhD Study Protocol titled: "Tiered laboratory analysis of common infections to characterise febrile morbidity not related to malaria in Sierra Leone." Firsthand reports such as this one of cases from health workers in the field are particularly valuable as reliable sources of information.
ProMED receives few reports of outbreaks of chikungunya virus infections from Africa. Most reports are from the Indian Ocean, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. This is the 1st ProMED report of chikungunya virus infections in people in Sierra Leone, although there have been previous reports from Senegal and Gabon (see cited ProMED-mail archives below). One cannot help but wonder whether scattered cases of chikungunya virus infection have been going on continuously in West Africa but at such a low incidence that they are not detected.
A HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map of Bo in the southern province of Sierra Leone can be accessed at http://healthmap.org/r/2MTW. - Mod.TY]
[In keeping with Mod.TY's comments, ProMED-mail would appreciate more information on chikungunya activity in West Africa from knowledgeable sources in the region. - Mod.MPP]