Feb 5, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – Egypt's health ministry reported today that a 2-year-old boy from the northeastern part of the country has been hospitalized in stable condition with an H5N1 avian influenza infection, according to a World Health Organization (WHO) statement.
The boy, from Suez governorate's Ganain district, got sick on Feb 2 and was hospitalized at Suez Fever Hospital the next day, the WHO reported. His healthcare team started the boy on a course of oseltamivir (Tamiflu) on the day he was hospitalized, according to an additional report yesterday from the WHO's Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office. His illness raises Egypt's H5N1 case count to 54 cases, 23 of them fatal.
An investigation into the boy's illness suggests he had contact with dead poultry, according to the WHO statement. Egypt's Central Public Health Laboratory confirmed the boy's H5N1 infection.
Egypt has had three H5N1 cases this year, and all were children age 2 or younger who were found to have had contact with sick or dead poultry. So far, none of them have died from their infections. According to previous WHO statements, all of the children received prompt hospital care after they got sick.
Egypt's new H5N1 case pushes the WHO's global count to 405, of which 254 were fatal.
Feb 5 WHO statement