Conjunctivitis cases on the rise in Singapore

September 9, 2014

There has been an increase in conjunctivitis cases, with the number of cases seen at polyclinics hitting its highest in two years last week. Statistics from the Health Ministry showed an average daily number of 155 cases compared to 88 over the same period last year.

Conjunctivitis is highly contagious and some doctors say they have seen a 10 to 20 per cent increase in cases of viral conjunctivitis over the past three weeks. Viral conjunctivitis, which is caused by the Adenovirus, has a long incubation period of about seven to 10 days and patients can suffer symptoms for up to two to three weeks.

Doctors say it is important to practise good hygiene so as to break the cycle, and prevent the infection from spreading to others. “Usually how it spreads is if you come into contact with infected tears of discharge from the patient,” said Dr Leo Seo Wei, a senior consultant ophthalmologist at the Mount Elizabeth Hospital.

“For example, if a patient touches his eye and then touches the doorknob and a second person comes and touches the doorknob, that’s how they get infected. There must be contact with the liquid, the fluid, of the infected persons.”

Source: Channel News Asia
Published: 06 Sep 2014


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