- A 2nd possible case of a patient contracting variant
Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease [abbreviated as CJD (new var.) or vCJD in ProMED-mail]
through a blood transfusion has been confirmed, the Department of Health
(DOH) said today. The patient received a blood transfusion in 1999 from
a donor who later went on to develop vCJD -- the human form of bovine spongiform
encephalopathy (BSE) or "mad cow disease".
- The DoH said the patient died of causes unrelated to
vCJD, but a post-mortem revealed the presence of the vCJD agent in the
spleen, according to the National CJD Surveillance Unit. The development
followed the 1st reported case of a patient contracting vCJD from a blood
transfusion which was announced by Health Secretary John Reid in December
2003. The patient, who received donor blood during an operation in 1997,
developed vCJD and died 6 years later.
- In response to that case -- thought to be the 1st person-to-person
transmission of vCJD in the world -- the Government banned anyone who had
received a blood transfusion since January 1980 from donating blood in
the future. The DoH said today that it was now extending measures to cover
a larger group of transfusion recipients who will no longer be allowed
to give blood from 2 Aug 2004.
- Dr Reid said today, "We are continuing to follow
a highly precautionary approach. Although people may have concerns about
the implications of this announcement, I would emphasise again that the
exclusion criteria are being tightened because of a small but unquantifiable
risk. People should continue to have a blood transfusion when it is really
necessary. Any slight risk associated with receiving blood must be balanced
against the significant risk of not receiving that blood when it is most
- Patricia A. Doyle, PhD Please visit my "Emerging
Diseases" message board at: http://www.clickitnews.com/ubbthreads/postlist.php?
- Zhan le Devlesa tai sastimasa
- Go with God and in Good Health