ZIYANG, Sichuan Province, July 25 (Xinhuanet) --
Preliminary investigation shows the unknown disease in southwest China's Sichuan
Province was caused by a kind of a swine virus known as streptococosis II.
The province has reported 80 cases
of the mysterious disease as of Monday morning, including 13 suspected cases,
and 19 fatalities and 17 case of illness, said Wu Jianlin, an expert with the
Sichuan Provincial Disease Control Center.
|A mysterious disease patient receives
medical treatment in a hospital in Ziyang of southwest China's Sichuan
Province July 25, 2005. (Xinhua
Four people have recovered and were discharged from
hospital, while the others are still being treated at local hospitals, Wu said.
The patients came from 75 villages in 40 townships in
cities and counties including Ziyang City, Jianyang City, Lezhi County and
Zizhong County in Neijiang City.
All the patients had direct contact with ill or dead
pigs before showing symptoms, said Chen Zhihai, director of the emergency team
of clinical experts.
The patients first reported symptoms of fever,
weakness and sickness, and then got symptoms of endemic gore and shock. Their
number of the white blood cells has also been soaring along with the
degeneration of the disease.
Judging from the symptoms and tests of the dead pigs,
experts reached the preliminary conclusion that the disease was caused by swine
With the enlarged searching, the number of the
affected people has been increasing, but the cases were dispersed in different
areas with no obvious signs of epidemic relationships. No evidence has been
found that the disease can spread among human beings, Chen Zhihai said.
"Eleven of our family members have eaten the pork,
but I'm the only one to catch the disease. I think I got infected when I helped
slaughter the pig and did not notice my finger was injured," said Jiang Suhua, a
patient from Bazi Village in Danshan Township in Ziyang.
"My father got ill suddenly and the fellow villagers
worried they would get infected, but no new cases were reported in the following
five days after my father was hospitalized. They now feel much safer," said Tang
Wei, son of a 50-year-old patient, Tang Xingwen, a villager from Ma'an Village
in Yanjiang Township in Ziyang.
Swine streptococosis was first spotted in the 1950s
and has been reported in many countries including France, Denmark, the United
States and Canada.
The government at all levels has been taking
emergency measures to cope with the disease. Enditem