First H1N1 influenza in Myanmar

Myanmar’s State media announced the country’s first swine flu case on 28 June 2009. The patient is a 13 year old school girl who came back from Singapore after a short visit. She arrived without showing signs and symptoms of influenza.

Her private tutorial teacher noticed she was not well, and sent her to hospital on Friday. She was treated as a suspect case of and put in the isolation ward at Rangoon General Hospital. Later, the National Lab of Myanmar confirmed she had .

“The Ministry of Health is keeping all persons who have come into contact with her: her family members, her classmates, private class teacher and her family members, and does not let them go out and is giving health care to them in order to prevent possible spread and take the outbreak of the disease under control,” the newspaper said.

It has also kept other 91 passengers who flew the same flight under surveillance.

In another news, a journalist was quarantined after he broke into the isolation room of the girl in the hospital. He bribed the guard to let him slip but was found out by the doctors. The guard was promptly dismissed and the journalist was quarantined at the Yangon General Hospital. The news cannot be individually confirmed.

2 comments for “First H1N1 influenza in Myanmar

  1. Sue Lin Lin
    June 30, 2009 at 12:08 pm

    မြန္ျပည္နယ္၊ မုဒံုၿမိဳ႕ ႏွင့္အျခားေသာၿမိဳ႕မ်ားတြင္လည္း ေရာဂါအမည္အားျဖင့္ မသိရေသာ္လည္း မုဒံုၿမိဳ႕တစ္၀က္ခန္႔ ကေလး၊ လူႀကီး မက်န္ေအာင္…ကူးစက္ပ်ံ႕ႏွံ႔ေနသည္ကို ေတြ႔ရပါသည္။ ေရာဂါလကၡဏာအားျဖင့္ ကိုယ္အပူခ်ိန္လြန္ကဲျခင္း။ ႏွာေဆး။ ေခ်ာင္းဆိုး။ အက်ိတ္မ်ားထြက္ျခင္း(ကိုယ္အႏွံ႔)။ အစက္အေျပာက္မ်ားထြက္ျခင္း တို႔ျဖစ္ေပၚေနပါသည္။ ၄င္းသည္လည္း H1N1 ဟုတ္မဟုတ္ ေဖာ္ျပေပးေစလိုပါသည္။ ။

    Editor’s Translation: “There is also an unknown disease that occurs in Mon State, in Mudon and other towns. In Mudon, half the population, both children and adults had the disease. The clinical features are high fever, sneezing, cough, lymph node enlargements all over the body and red spots. Is it H1N1. Please answer.”

    • June 30, 2009 at 10:38 pm

      I am not sure whether this is H1N1 or not. However, according to WHO case definition, to be able to give a diagnosis as “Suspected Novel H1N1 influenza”, the patient needs to have not only symptoms of common cold or influenza, but also CONTACT history. That means, contact with confirmed H1N1 patient within last 7 days, or coming back from H1N1 infected area/country/town. The first confirmed H1N1 is in Yangon (Rangoon). I don’t think H1N1 will spread that fast to reach Mon State without first spread in Yangon. And very few foreign visitors visit Mon State. But from the clinical features, it seem like it is a seasonal flu, which comes every year.

      One thing I would like to express here is, there is no need for panic for H1N1. Even though there are some death from Novel H1N1 in the world, the mortality rate (death rate) is very low, even lower than the seasonal flu. The novel H1N1 influenza is a very mild disease and most people recover without any complication. Just stay home and take a rest. And the use of face mask does not prevent you from getting the disease. WHO does not recommend use of mask in the public to prevent the disease. However, the best strategy is to avoid the crowded places (buses, supermarkets, stage shows). If you have fever and any of the following, headache, eye pain, muscle and joint pain, sneeze, cough, runny nose, go and see the doctor, take a rest, don’t go to school or work. You will recover within a few days without any problem. Don’t panic. And no need to be afraid.

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