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S. Korea confirms second case of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease

All Headlines 11:08 December 08, 2011

SEOUL, Dec. 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's health authorities on Thursday confirmed the country's second case of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), a degenerative neurological disorder.

A 48-year-old man was diagnosed with iatrogenic CJD (iCJD) on Wednesday, according to the Center for Disease Control. The person's identity was withheld for privacy reasons.

The report of the country's second-ever iCJD case comes after a 54-year-old woman was found last month to have died from the same disease that is often transmitted by the use of defective prion proteins found in surgical tissue graft products.

The woman had received brain surgery using Lyodura, a tissue graft product, some 23 years ago. The KCDC said the man in the latest case had also received Lyodura during brain surgery in 1988.

This form of CJD has an incubation period of more than 20 years but once symptoms occur, death usually takes place within a year.

CJD is the most common of so-called human prion diseases with one person in every 1 million diagnosed each year worldwide. It is an invariably fatal illness with death occurring after the onset of dementia, hallucinations, coordination dysfunction and seizures.

The animal form of the disease is called bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) which is commonly called mad cow disease. BSE also leaves holes in the brain that resemble a sponge.


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