The last time the sultanate of Oman reported a case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus, or MERS-CoV, it was late May. 2015.
Today, the Ministry of Health announced the confirmation of a new MERS case, the 7th reported in the country, according to a health ministry press release (computer translated).
The current patient, an individual in their 40s, suffered from acute pneumonia and fever and is stable condition.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the clinical spectrum of MERS-CoV infection ranges from no symptoms (asymptomatic) or mild respiratory symptoms to severe acute respiratory disease and death. A typical presentation of MERS-CoV disease is fever, cough and shortness of breath. Pneumonia is a common finding, but not always present. Gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhoea, have also been reported. Severe illness can cause respiratory failure that requires mechanical ventilation and support in an intensive care unit. Approximately 36% of reported patients with MERS-CoV have died.
Although the majority of human cases of MERS have been attributed to human-to-human infections, camels are likely to be a major reservoir host for MERS-CoV and an animal source of MERS infection in humans. However, the exact role of camels in transmission of the virus and the exact route(s) of transmission are unknown.
Since first reported in people in September 2012 through the end of 2015, 1,644 MERS cases have been reported, including 638 deaths.
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