SA man in Brazil did not die from arenavirus, says NICD

The death of a South African man in Brazil was not caused by the arenavirus, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) said on Monday.

The institute’s deputy director, Dr Lucille Blumberg, said laboratory tests had tested negative for the virus.

Foreign news agencies reported that a 53-year-old man fell ill on November 25, two days after arriving in Brazil to attend a conference. Tick-bite fever was now suspected of being the cause of death.

“Tick-bite fever, acquired in South Africa, is the likely cause of the illness, as indicated by tests performed by the reference laboratory in Brazil.”

The fever, she said, was a well-documented cause of severe illness. It did not pose any risks to those who had been in close contact with infected people.—Sapa


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