News Scan for Apr 03, 2018

Monkeypox in Central African Republic
Flu antivirals and death

Monkeypox outbreak recorded in Central African Republic

The Central African Republic (CAR) declared an outbreak of monkeypox in Bambari district, according to the latest weekly World Health Organization (WHO) African regional office bulletin, dated Mar 30 but posted yesterday.

From Mar 2 to Mar 25, CAR health officials identified eight case-patients, three of whom have been hospitalized. There have been no deaths, and all cases have occurred in people over the age of 5. Four patients are male and four female.

Researchers at the Institut Pasteur in Bangui confirmed monkeypox in six of eight patient samples. Last fall, Nigeria reported one of the largest monkeypox outbreaks in African history, with 68 cases.
Mar 30 WHO African regional office


Spanish study shows early use of antivirals during flu may reduce death

A new study conducted by Spanish investigators shows that patients with severe influenza who took neuraminidase inhibitors within 5 days of symptom onset were less likely to die. The study was published yesterday in Epidemiology & Infection.

Researchers based in Catalonia looked at the use of neuraminidase inhibitors (NAIs) in 1,727 hospitalized patients, of whom 1,577 (91.3%) received NAI treatment for flu from 2010 to 2016.

Patients who received treatment within 48 hours after symptom onset had the greatest reduction in death (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 0.37; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.22-0.63), followed by patients given the antivirals up to 3 days after symptoms appeared (aOR, 0.49; 95% CI, 0.30-0.79). Patients who received antivirals 5 days or more after symptom onset had no reduction in death rates.

Intensive care unit patients who received NAIs also had lower fatality rates.

The authors conclude that this study confirms the use of NAIs in the treatment of severe flu. Early treatment, even before laboratory confirmation of the virus can be helpful for patients at risk for severe complications from infection.
Apr 2 Epidemiol Infect

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