Cameron Highlands man’s death not linked to SARS


  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 22 Apr 2003

BY AUDREY EDWARDS

KUALA LUMPUR: The death of a 30-year old man from Cameron Highlands last Thursday is not related to the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) killer virus. 

Confirming this, Health Ministry deputy director-general Datuk Dr Ismail Merican said the verdict was based on a post mortem which required the patient’s lungs to be examined for signs of SARS. 

The examination on Sunday showed no signs of pneumonia or infection of the lungs, he said.  

“His lungs were congested due to heart failure,” he told the daily press briefing on the SARS situation at the ministry here yesterday. 

“We found that he had cardiovascular disease and one of his vessels was 95% blocked. He also had an enlarged liver,” Dr Ismail said, adding that the ministry was being proactive in conducting examinations on cases of sudden death, such as that caused by heart attack or massive stroke. 

Dr Ismail had said on Sunday that the man, 30, was treated for urinary tract infection at a private hospital after he became ill on April 13 with fever and frequent and painful urination. 

He was sent to Ipoh Hospital for further treatment on April 17 after having breathing problems. He died the same day. 

His remains were sent to KL Hospital for a post-mortem before being claimed by his family. 

The man’s history had shown no contact with SARS-infected people and he had not been to SARS-affected countries. 

The ministry, said Dr Ismail, was awaiting results of virology tests on two other men, aged 37 and 68 years, who had died. 

As at 6pm on Saturday, he said there was one suspected case in Selangor and 242 notifications. 

The number of people in isolation at SARS-designated hospitals nationwide is 18 while 17 were under quarantine. 

Probable cases stood at six, with three having travelled to China and the rest to Singapore.  

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