A DEADLY disease that causes nosebleeds is mystifying doctors.
Symptoms also include a fever, headache and fatigue – but it’s not clear how the virus kills.
So far, 13 cases of the strange illness have been reported in Tanzania’s southeastern region of Lindi.
Three people have died, the government said Wednesday.
A team of doctors and health experts are scrambling to investigate the disease, which appears similar to a viral hemorrhagic fever.
The country’s chief medical officer Aifello Sichalwe said in a statement that all patients had tested negative for similar viruses Ebola and Marburg, as well as Covid.
One of the patients has fully recovered while the others are being isolated, he said.
“The government formed a team of professionals who are still investigating this unknown disease,” he added.
He called on people in the area to remain calm.
Tanzania’s President Samia Suluhu Hassan said on Tuesday the “strange” disease reported in Lindi may have been caused by “growing interaction” between humans and wild animals.
If the virus has jumped from an animal to humans, that would make it a zoonotic disease.
A report by the World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday warned that zoonotic diseases were becoming a growing problem in Africa.
But it’s just Africa that is affected – as is seen with monkeypox, which is now unusually spreading globally.
Monkeypox had previously been limited to Africa, but is causing huge outbreaks in the UK, Europe and US this summer.
“There has been a 63 per cent increase in the number of zoonotic outbreaks in the region in the decade from 2012-2022 compared to 2001-2011”, the WHO said.
Reasons for the concerning spike include a growing population and demand for food derived from animals.
Experts warned action must be taken to prevent Africa becoming a “hotspot of emerging infectious diseases”.
It comes after Ghana last week reported two suspected cases of the Marburg virus – which has up to a 90 per cent mortality rate.
Belonging to the same family as Ebola, the Marburg virus causes symptoms including high fever and internal and external bleeding.
The two patients, who sadly died, had been taken to a local hospital with symptoms including diarrhoea, fever, nausea and vomiting.
Source: The Sun