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Dangerous tropical disease spreads in Germany – media – RT World News

The number of new cases of West Nile fever in the country has doubled since last year

Twice as many people have contracted West Nile fever in Germany this year as in 2021, Der Spiegel reported on Tuesday, citing data provided by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the national health watchdog. .

The number of infections recorded in Germany since the end of August has risen to ten, according to RKI. At least eight of them have been proven to have been contracted in Germany, the agency’s spokeswoman told Der Spiegel.

At least four states have been affected by the spread of the disease, including the capital Berlin, the eastern states of Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt, as well as North Rhine-Westphalia in the west, said the RKI, adding that other cases may yet to be discovered.

While the number of cases doubled from 2021, it is lower than in 2020, when a total of 30 cases were recorded, Der Spiegel said. Infections among Germans who had not traveled abroad were first detected in 2019.

The RKI also said it documented transmission of the virus between birds and mosquitoes in Germany in 2018. The pathogen is now believed to be able to hibernate in mosquitoes in Germany.

The fever is usually asymptomatic, which means most cases go unreported, according to the RKI. One in five people infected with the virus develop flu-like symptoms, including headache or fever, as well as vomiting or rash.

One in 100 people, however, can become seriously ill because the disease can cause inflammation of the brain, such as encephalitis or meningitis, and can lead to seizures. The probability of death in critically ill patients is about 10%. Recovery can take weeks or even months. The elderly and people with chronic illnesses are considered to be particularly at risk of serious infections.

According to the European Health Agency (ECDC), a total of 950 cases of West Nile fever have been reported across the bloc this year, with 82 deaths linked to the infection. Southern European countries seem to be disproportionately affected. Italy alone has recorded more than 570 cases with another 280 reported in Greece.

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