Diarrhea Kills 2 In South RP

September 16, 2007 at 6:41 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

SHARIFF KABUNSUAN, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / 16 Sept) – Two people had died and five dozens more were infected with a still unknown disease in two remote villages in the southern Philippines, health officials said Sunday.

Health workers and doctors rushed to North Upi town in the province of Shariff Kabunsuan where at least 47 villagers fell sick.

Doctors on Sunday put up temporary emergency stations in the village of Tubuan and Lahangkup to treat the sick.

“Those who are sick were suffering from diarrhea, bloody diarrhea and two people have already died, a girl and an adult and at least 57 others are also infected,” Julie Villadolid, of the Department of Health in the Muslims autonomous region, told the Mindanao Examiner.

Health workers suspect contaminated water was the culprit in the outbreak of diseases in the two villages. Villagers get their water from springs, Villadolid said.

“We have taken rectal swab from the sick and water samples from mountain springs to determine the cause of the outbreak of diseases and diarrhea,” she said.

Escherichia coli bacteria are a leading cause of bloody diarrhea. The symptoms are worse in children and older people, and especially in people who have another illness. Most E. coli infections come from drinking contaminated water and milk from animals such as goats and buffaloes.

Just this year, at least 18 people had died from viral gastroenteritis in Zamboanga City and Basilan island. Gastroenteritis is an acute infectious syndrome of the stomach lining and intestines and health experts said the symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal cramps.

Villadolid said they are still awaiting the results of laboratory tests to determine whether E. coli or other bacteria is the cause of the outbreak of diseases in the town. (Mark Navales)

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