Skip to comments.Soaring MERS Cases in Saudi Arabia Raise Alarms
Posted on 05/03/2014 5:59:41 PM PDT by neverdem
Scientists are scrambling to make sense of a sharp increase in reported infections with the deadly Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) virus. In April alone, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have reported over 200 new casesmore than all MERS-affected countries combined in the preceding 2 years. That has sparked fresh fears that the virus may be about to go on a global rampage.
The World Health Organization expressed alarm at the new numbers, and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) published an updated risk assessment on 25 April warning European countries to expect more imported cases. Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, replaced its health minister.
The surge has raised concerns that the virus is undergoing genetic changes that might cause it to become pandemic. But none have been identified so far, and several other factors could be to blame, scientists sayfrom increased testing to sloppy hospital hygiene and a wave of camel births across the region.
Saudi Arabia alone has now reported 345 MERS cases, including 105 deaths, since the start of the epidemic in 2012; most of the new cases are in Jeddah, in the western part of the country. Many worry that mutations in the virus's genome might be making it more adept at spreading between humansas happened with MERS's distant cousin, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), in 2002 and 2003...
(Excerpt) Read more at sciencemag.org ...
The camel jockeys are getting ill from the camels?
I love a story with a happy ending.
a wave of camel births across the region.
Well, you know it had to be something like that...
CDC confirms first case of MERS virus in American
He is hospitalized in good condition in northwest Indiana with Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Indiana health officials said Friday.
The virus is not highly contagious and this case “represents a very low risk to the broader, general public,” Dr. Anne Schuchat told reporters during a CDC briefing.
The federal agency plans to track down passengers he may have been in close contact with during his travels; it was not clear how many may have been exposed to the virus.
So far, it is not known how he was infected, Schuchat said.
Saudi Arabia has been at the center of a Middle East outbreak of MERS that began two years ago. The virus has spread among health care workers, most notably at four facilities in that country last spring.
Officials didn’t provide details about the American’s job in Saudi Arabia or whether he treated MERS patients.
View gallerythe MERS coronavirus that emerged in 2012
This file photo provided by the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a color
Overall, at least 400 people have had the respiratory illness, and more than 100 people have died. All had ties to the Middle East region or to people who traveled there.
Should be going good by the time of the Haj.
Good retort, chuckle
Testing new tagline.
Yikes..I was just on the Arabian Peninsula 6 weeks ago (UAE).In fact,I spent a few hours with a couple of Saudis I met there.I think a quick call to my doctor might be in order.
Did you smoke a camel?
No,but I tried to ride one during my "desert safari".But my metal hip wouldn't hear of it.
Ramadan starts in June and ends in July. If they don’t control the pandemic now, it goes global with all the Mecca pilgrims in two to three months.
If that was 6 weeks ago, and you have not become ill with MERS already, you will not become ill. The incubation period for MERS is less than 2 weeks.
There is a small chance you could have developed a mild asymptomatic case. If so, that could be found with a blood test... but it's probably not worth the effort to find out.
But I don't feel well.The room is spinning.I feel like I'm going to swoon.My face has broken out.
Only kidding,I'm fine.I'm sure you're right. :-)
Wouldnt that be a kick to the head ? The MOOOZLEMS ( favored by allah) all catch sars at the haj and....... presto !! chango !! whole lot less Muzzies (and their girlfriend camels !! Maybe the wannnnnn could lay hands on them (if he is not playing golf that day)
Your tag line has the dims pegged.
"...The MERS virus has been found in camels, but officials don't know how it is spreading to humans. It can spread from person to person, but officials believe that happens only after close contact..."
Huh. Found in camels. Spreads from person to person in close contact.
And officials just don't know how it is spreading to people.
A real puzzler, that.
Elaine: Doctor, Mr Hammen ate fish, and Randy said there are five more cases, and they all had fish too.
Rumack: And the co-pilot had fish. What did the navigator have?
Elaine: He had fish.
Rumack: All right, now we know what we're up against. Every passenger on this plane had fish for dinner will become violently ill in the next half hour.
Elaine: Just how serious is it?
Rumack: Extremely serious. It starts with a slight fever and dryness of the throat. [Oveur starts suffering from these]
Rumack: When the virus penetrates the red blood cells, the victim becomes dizzy, begins to experience an itchy rash...[Oveur suffers from those as well]
Rumack: ...then the poison goes to work on the central nervous system, severe muscle spasms followed by the inevitable drooling. [Oveur also suffers from these]
Rumack: At this point, the entire digestive system collapses accompanied by uncontrollable flatulence. :[Oveur does]
Rumack: Until finally, the poor bastard is reduced to a quivering wasted piece of jelly.
Obesity is Inflammatory Disease, Rat Study Shows Monocyte-derived macrophages are getting involved.
Forgive the delayed ping please. FReepmail me if you want on or off my combined microbiology/immunology ping list.