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Fatal Meningococcemia-like Case In Malasiqui

Recombinomics Commentary
January 18, 2005

>>MALASIQUI -- The death of a boy last Sunday at the Villaflor Hospital in Dagupan City was a suspected case of meningococcemia, it was learned Tuesday.

The body of the boy from Barangay Lasip, Malasiqui was placed in a body bag and sealed coffin and was immediately buried in a still unknown cemetery.

Dr. Leticia Fe Macaranas, rural health unit officer, said the boy had high fever for three days and rashes prior to his death. <<

The meningo-like cases in the Philippines are not confirmed, even though they have a 68% case fatality rate.  The number of meningo-like cases outnumbers the meningo confirmed cases.  In the WHO warning there were 33 Baguio cases mentioned and 25 were unconfirmed.  Of the 8 confirmed, one was reclassified as meningitis, so there were only 7 confirmed cases of meningo.

Media reports indicate that the number of meningo-like cases exceeds 100, yet there still is no mention of testing for bird flu, which has a case fatality rate almost identical to the meningo-like cases, which are transmissible human to human. 

More virulent versions of H5N1 are neurotropic and the virus frequently recombines.  Recently three cases of acute pneumonia were identified in northern Vietnam with different demographics.  The fatal case has died and tested negative for H5N1, but reports on the avian influenza status of the other two suspect cases has not been reported.

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