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Saipan: CHC confirms 3 cases of ARDS; 1 death recorded

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  • Saipan: CHC confirms 3 cases of ARDS; 1 death recorded

    Officials of the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. disclosed yesterday that the public hospital has had three confirmed cases of adult respiratory distress syndrome, or ARDS, of which one patient has died.

    Health officials assured, however, that there is no flu outbreak on island. The ARDS cases were also described as completely different and separate from the novel avian influenza A (H7N9 flu) virus.

    ARDS is a life-threatening reaction to injuries or acute infection of the lung. It is a severe lung syndrome with direct and indirect causes.

    Interim CEO Esther Mu?a disclosed that the first case was admitted to the hospital on May 13 while the second case was brought in on May 16, both of them pregnant women.

    Both underwent Caesarian operations so they could safely deliver their babies. The infants were immediately placed in ventilators.

    The third case, a middle-aged man, was admitted on May 14 and died on May 17.

    To date, both mothers are in good condition, along with their newborns, who are no longer in ventilators, health officials said.

    The definitive cause of the third patient's death remains unknown at this time.

    Mu?a said that all three patients are from different villages on Saipan and have no direct contact with one another.

    In a briefing yesterday, epidemiologist Ed Diaz disclosed that all three cases have been investigated and there was no evidence at this time that links the cases to the H7N9 flu virus. Investigation, however, will continue and in consultation with the U.S. Centers for Disease and Control.

    According to intensive care unit nurse supervisor Wilma Gamundoy, this was not the first time for the hospital to admit ARDS cases. Because of underlying causes, she said it is not unusual to see patients with ARDS. Gamundoy described the symptoms of ARDS as flu-like symptoms with coughing and fever.

    ?It's flu season and we want to encourage everyone to take extra precaution to prevent flu. Flu vaccine is the single best way to protect them from the flu virus and we would like to encourage the public to get their flu shots,? Mu?a said.

  • #2
    Man dies of unidentified flu-like illness (ARDS), 2 pregnant women improving
    Man dies of flu-like illness

    Published on Tuesday, May 21, 2013 00:00
    Written by By Emmanuel T. Erediano

    In the three cases admitted at CHC, Namkung said they didn?t make a definitive finding although many tests were conducted. The influenza tests are negative so far but the hospital is doing further tests, she added.

    Namkung admitted that they have not found a bacterial source yet but added that ARDS can be caused by chemical, bacterial or viral causes. She said ARDS destroys the ability of the lungs to function and the mortality rate in such cases is very high.

    She said it was a blessing that the women are now improving despite that fact that both of them were pregnant when they were admitted.

    Muna said one of the women was admitted on May 13, while the other was admitted on May 16.

    The third case, a middle-aged man, was admitted on May 14 and died on May 17.

    Muna said ?the cause of death is unknown at this time? but the patient had a flu-like illness and was admitted at CHC for severe respiratory illnesses.

    Muna said there was no link between the three cases.

    ?We would like the public to know that we are very, very concerned about the situation and we are working extremely hard and have done an exceptional job in attending to the patients,? she said.

    Muna said there is no evidence of H7N9 infection in the three cases, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control is asking for further testing. CHC, she added, is in constant communication with the federal agency.
    Last edited by Emily; May 20, 2013, 02:34 PM. Reason: 'Recoverd' to 'improving' in title.

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    • #3
      Mariana Islands - Man dies of flu-like illness

      Man dies of flu-like illness (Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands)
      Details Published on Tuesday, May 21, 2013 00:00 Written by By Emmanuel T. Erediano - - Variety News Staff

      THE Commonwealth Health Center saved the lives of two pregnant women and their babies from adult respiratory distress syndrome, or ARDS, but a man died of the flu-like illness.

      Commonwealth Health Care Corp. chief executive officer Esther Muna, in a press conference yesterday, said they wanted to make it clear that there was no influenza outbreak in the CNMI.

      ARDS, according to CHC federal consultant Dr. Poki Namkung, is a devastating condition that is related to many causes including severe pneumonia.
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