Following the anxieties and palpable fear generated by the mysterious deaths through vomiting by 7 persons in Enugu’s New Artisan livestock Market on Friday, the state health ministry has come up with an explanation of the bizarre incident.The Enugu State Ministry of Health has confirmed that there is a Cholera outbreak in New Artisan Market, Enugu, which resulted in the death of seven people in the market with 19 sick persons identified with the symptoms of loose stool and vomiting.
Confirming the Cholera outbreak in the market, the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Emmanuel Ikechukwu Obi, disclosed that the Ministry’s rapid response team, upon receiving reports of the incident carried out an immediate investigation and “it was observed that the patients presented with sudden onset of passage of loose stool and vomiting”.
He added that “the ill persons identified within the area were immediately and safely evacuated to 7the state teaching hospital and are receiving treatment, while health education on safe and hygienic practices were given to the inhabitants of the market”.
According to the Health Commissioner, “further tests carried out by the State Ministry of Health at the Teaching Hospital revealed that all the persons were suffering from Cholera.
“Samples were collected for further confirmatory tests of this finding. “Surveillance, contact tracing and risk assessment have commenced at the market and its environs, while the Enugu State Ministry of Health Emergency Operations Centre for Cholera outbreak response will be activated on Saturday 17th July 2021”.
Dr. Obi, who on behalf of the Enugu State Government, prayed for the repose of the souls of the deceased and commiserated with those who lost their loved ones, enjoined “the general public to keep safe as the situation is under control and the Enugu State Ministry of Health will keep the public informed on future developments”.
He explained that “Cholera is an infection caused by some strains of the bacterium Vibrio cholera. Risk factors are from poor sanitation, and contaminated drinking water. ”
“The classic symptom is large amounts of watery diarrhea that lasts a few days. Vomiting and muscle cramps may also occur. Symptoms range from none, to mild, to severe”, he elucidated further.
Dr Obi disclosed also that “Diarrhea can be so severe that it leads within hours to severe dehydration, electrolyte imbalance and even death. Symptoms start two hours to five days after exposure”, and pointed out that
“It is prevented by improvements in sanitation, use of clean water, hand washing and vaccines. Treatment involves replacement of lost body fluids orally or intravenously, zinc supplementation and antibiotic suddenly, after a short spell of illness, on Friday morning “Upon immediate investigation by the Ministry of Health’s rapid response team, it was observed that the patients presented with sudden onset of passage of loose the market.