Kembalinya Penyakit Demam Kuning

SEATTLE – Sebelum horor akibat wabah Ebola di Afrika Barat terhapus dari pikiran kita, virus Zika muncul sebagai risiko besar bagi kesehatan global, dan kini menyibukkan para peneliti dan dokter di Amerika Selatan, Amerika Tengah, dan Kepulauan Karibia. Akan tetapi, angka kematian akibat virus lain terus meningkat tajam: demam kuning (yellow fever).

Di Afrika barat daya, Angola menghadapi epidemi serius akibat penyakit demam kuning – wabah pertama dalam kurun 30 tahun. Sejak muncul di Luanda, ibukota dan kota terpadat penduduknya di Angola, pada bulan Desember lalu, virus tersebut telah menewaskan 293 orang dan menginfeksi sekitar 2.267 orang. Virus tersebut sudah menyebar ke enam dari total 18 provinsi di Angola. Kasus demam kuning dilaporkan di Cina, Kongo, dan Kenya yang dibawa oleh orang-orang yang datang dari Angola. Kini Nambia dan Zambia masuk daftar negara yang perlu diwaspadai.

Virus penyakit demam kuning ditularkan oleh gigitan nyamuk Aedes aegypti – jenis nyamuk yang juga menyebarkan virus Zika. Gejalanya termasuk demam, nyeri pada otot, sakit kepala, mual, muntah-muntah, dan kelelahan. Hampir setengah pasien yang tidak diobati meninggal dunia dalam waktu 10-14 hari akibat penyakit demam kuning yang parah.

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