The general public has been urged to maintain a habit of frequent handwashing to deal with the increasing cases of Acute haemorrhagic conjunctivitis, commonly referred to as Apollo.
More than 50% of eye cases reported at the Police Hospital’s eye clinic are linked to Apollo and health officials warn of a fast spread across all 16 Regions.
Dr. Franklin Asiedu-Bekoe, the Director of Public Health at the Ghana Health Service in an interview with Citi News stressed the need for individuals to refrain from touching their eyes and advocated for the promotion of frequent handwashing.
“This is about prevention, how do we ensure that people avoid touching their eyes, and we need to also promote handwashing,” the Director of Public Health at the Ghana Health Service advised.
Acute hemorrhagic conjunctivitis or Apollo is a severe form of viral pink eye that could cause eyelid swelling, eye discharge, and bleeding. There’s no cure, but treatments can help you manage the symptoms until the virus clears.
Conjunctivitis (“pink eye”) is inflammation of your conjunctiva, the thin membrane that covers your eyeball and inner eyelid. This inflammation is usually due to an infection, allergen, or toxin. Certain viruses can cause a specific type of conjunctivitis called acute hemorrhagic conjunctivitis (AHC).
In parts of West Africa, AHC is sometimes called “Apollo 11 disease” because scientists first discovered it in Ghana in 1969 Trusted Source, the year of the moon landing.
AHC is typically much more severe than other types of conjunctivitis. Symptoms can include painful swelling and noticeable bleeding in and around your eye.