IPOH: A 30-year-old man, identified to be the first Malaysian to be infected with the Zika virus this year, died early today.
Health Ministry director-general Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, however, said they had yet to confirm whether the man from Pahang died due to Zika virus itself or a related infection.
He said Zika was report in Bentong way back in the 1960s.
"Although we had the local Zika over the years, we have not seen any increased incidence of microcephaly.
“We are currently investigating the contacts and movements, plus any co-infection in the patient,” he said adding that the ministry would prepare a statement once the reports were ready.
The deceased who was identified as Lieutenant Maritime Mohamad Ikmal was found to be vomiting and suffered from diarrhoea on Sept 26.
He was admitted to hospital the following day before being transferred to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Manjung Hospital here on Sept 29.
Dr Noor Hisham said the infection was registered with the state Health Department on Oct 12.
It was learnt that the deceased who served on board the KM Nusa Maritim in Terengganu was pronounced dead at 4.45am today.
It was reported that the Zika disease was linked to a foetal deformation known as microcephaly in which infants are born with abnormally small heads.
Malaysia recorded a case of Zika infection after a 58-year-old woman in Bandar Botanic, Klang, was infected on Sept 1, 2016.
Two days later, another case was recorded when a 61-year-old man tested positive for the virus in Likas, Sabah. The man died the same day due to heart complications.