Mystery Illness Connected to Lubbock County - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/25/03

Mystery Illness Connected to Lubbock County

A Lubbock County woman has contracted the mysterious flu like disease that originated in East Asia. Disease Investigator for the Lubbock County Health Department, Ken Condon, says the woman is not currently living in Lubbock. He also says there any no cases of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, in Lubbock County.

Condon says the woman also has a residence in Montgomery County, near Houston and is being treated in a Harris County Hospital. Her name has not been released. The woman is the third person in Harris County to be treated for Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS. All three people are expected to make a full recovery.

Condon says there is no reason for people in Lubbock County or Texas to be alarmed right now. He says people who have travelled internationally are at risk.  Also, people who have come in contact with someone who's travelled internationally. The cities currently at risk are Hong Kong, The Guang Dong Province, China, Toronto and Hanoi, Vietnam.  Condon says these cities are at risk because of the severity of the cases.

More than 450 people worldwide have contracted the disease. 17 have died, though none in the United States. The woman from Lubbock County had just returned from Asia.

Symptoms include a cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, a change in a chest X-ray and a fever over 100.4 degrees. If you experience these symptoms within ten days of returning from one of the at risk cities, you should contact your doctor.

Currently, there is no known treatment for SARS . The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta has activated its Emergency Operations Center while they try to find a treatment. This is only the third time in its history the CDC has activated the EOC.

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