Iraq Reports 55 Cases of Viral Hemorrhagic Fever, 12 Deaths
The Iraqi Health Ministry on Tuesday said that it had recorded up to 55 cases of viral hemorrhagic fever (VHF) recently, including 12 fatal cases. “Most of the VHF cases were registered in Iraq’s southern province of Dhi Qar, where 29 of the total cases were detected,” Health Ministry spokesman Sayf al-Badr said at a press conference. Hemorrhagic fever is not new in Iraq, but the number of cases is growing, the spokesman said. The first VHF case in the current wave was detected in Dhi Qar last month. “There is no vaccine or antiviral for this disease, the patient can be treated in the early stages of the disease, but the treatment would be difficult when the disease reaches the dangerous stage such as bleeding under the skin or from other parts of the body,” al-Badr said. The VHFs are not one particular disease but rather a group of diseases caused by several different viruses, including the Ebola virus. VHFs affect multiple organ systems and may cause fever and bleeding. The Iraqi Health Ministry did not say which virus caused the recent VHF cases.