BEIRUT

Middle East

Iran confirms first two cases of MERS

  • Particles of the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus that emerged in 2012 are seen in an undated colorized transmission electron micrograph from the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). REUTERS/National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases/Handout via Reuters

DUBAI: Iranian officials say they have confirmed the country's first two cases of MERS, a deadly virus first reported two years ago in Saudi Arabia, its neighbour on the western side of the Gulf.

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Corona-Virus (MERS) causes coughing, fever and sometimes fatal pneumonia, killing an estimated 30 percent of those who are infected.

There is no vaccine or specific treatment for MERS, which has killed more than 175 people in Saudi Arabia and spread throughout the region, also reaching as far as Malaysia, Greece, Lebanon and the United States.

"Four suspected cases of new corona virus infection were observed in a family in the province of Kerman. Two of these cases were confirmed in two sisters," said Mohammad Mahdi Gouya, the director-general of communicable diseases at the Iranian Health Ministry's Centre for Diseases Control and Prevention.

"One of the sisters is in critical condition and the other is currently receiving treatment under special circumstances," the ministry's website quoted him on Monday as saying.

A recent upsurge of infections in Saudi Arabia is of concern because of the influx of pilgrims from around the world expected in July during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

Gouya also said that Tehran had dispatched trained medical teams to Saudi Arabia, where they studied MERS cases among Iranian Hajj pilgrims, according to Iran's Press TV.

Arrangements were being made for Iranian pilgrims to undergo medical check-ups after they return home, he added.

MERS is a virus from the same family as SARS, or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, which killed about 800 people worldwide after it first appeared in China in 2002.

 
Advertisement

Comments

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus
Summary

Iran confirms first two cases of MERS

Iranian officials say they have confirmed the country's first two cases of MERS, a deadly virus first reported two years ago in Saudi Arabia, its neighbour on the western side of the Gulf.

Gouya also said that Tehran had dispatched trained medical teams to Saudi Arabia, where they studied MERS cases among Iranian Hajj pilgrims, according to Iran's Press TV.


Advertisement

FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE

Interested in knowing more about this story?

Click here