Apr 6, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – The human toll of avian influenza in Egypt rose to 11 cases today with reports that an 18-year-old girl has died and an 8-year-old boy is hospitalized with the illness.
Three of the 11 cases have been fatal, and all have involved children or young adults with a history of contact with sick poultry, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in an update on the situation. The WHO today increased its global tally of avian flu cases to 192, with 109 deaths.
The 18-year-old girl died today, after 8 days of illness and a day of hospitalization, the WHO said. She was from the Minufiyah governorate north of Cairo.
An Agence France-Presse report citing Egypt's official news agency listed the girl's name as Iman Mohammed Abdel Gawad and gave her age as 16.
Also reported today was the case of an 8-year-old boy from the Qalibiya governorate near Cairo. The WHO said he was hospitalized in stable condition but gave no other details.
Today the WHO also recognized two other Egyptian cases that were reported earlier by the media, one in a 31-year-old Egyptian who works in Jordan and the other in a 16-month-old girl.
The 31-year-old man had helped slaughter poultry while on a recent visit to his home south of Cairo, the WHO said. He returned to Jordan on Mar 29 and was hospitalized the next day; he remains hospitalized in stable condition. Health officials in both Egypt and Jordan have concluded that he almost certainly caught the virus in Egypt, the WHO said.
The agency said the 16-month-old girl, whose case was reported yesterday, remains in a hospital in stable condition. She is from the southern governorate of Sohaj.
In addition, the WHO today noted the fatal case of avian flu in a 12-year-old Cambodian boy, reported by the media yesterday. The boy, from the southern province of Prey Veng, became ill Mar 29 and was hospitalized in Phnom Penh on Apr 4.
A team of Cambodian, WHO, and Pasteur Institute officials visited the boy's village yesterday and learned that many chickens and some ducks had died there in recent weeks, the WHO reported. "The child reportedly gathered dead chickens for distribution to village families for consumption," the statement said.
The team found 25 close contacts of the boy, none of whom had signs of illness so far, the agency reported.
Apr 6 WHO statement on situation in Egypt
Apr 6 WHO statement on Cambodian case