First recorded death from as horror images emerge

An elderly man has become the first ever patient to die from a recently discovered virus as horror images of its impact on the body emerge. The man, from a remote part of Kenai Peninsula, Alaska, died from Alaskapox – a viral infection that’s closely reported to chicken pox. He was immunocompromised and undergoing treatment for cancer, when his skin lesions became infected with the newly discovered virus.This resulted in kidney failure – complication that ultimately killed him in late January.Skin lesions should be covered with bandages as an extra precaution, health officials sayGetty ImagesThe elderly patient is one of only seven cases of the viral infection to be recorded since 2015, the Alaska Department of Public Health said in an announcement on Friday.He’s thought to have contracted the deadly infection after getting bitten by a stray cat.As a result, Alaska Department of Health has warned that domestic pets such as cats and dogs “may also play a role in spreading the virus”, although more research is needed to determine the route of transmission.“People should not necessarily be concerned but more aware,” added Julia Rogers, a state epidemiologist. “So we’re hoping to make clinicians more aware of what Alaskapox virus is, so that they can identify signs and symptoms.”What should you be on the lookout for? Health officials are racing to understand more about the recently discovered virus. Previous cases only shown mild symptoms in patients — typically a localised rash and swollen lymph nodes.Images released by the Alaska Department of Health show dark lesions on the surface of the skin.As a precautionary measure, Alaskan health officials are urging the public to cover up skin lesions with bandages.The elderly patient is one of only seven cases of the viral infection to be recorded in the state since 2015Getty ImagesPrior to his death, the elderly man noticed a red bump in his right armpit and was prescribed antibiotics. But six weeks later, his symptoms only grew and included fatigue and pain.He was hospitalized in Anchorage and underwent a “battery of tests” in December and tested positive for cowpox. Additional testing by the Centers for Disease Control revealed it was actually Alaskapox.His condition initially improved a week after intravenous medications, but he died in late January after experiencing kidney and respiratory failure, health officials said.

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