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Lack of Vitamin B1 triggers neuropathy
Health experts have warned of the return of neuropathy caused by vitamin B1-deficiency among a large population section in the northern province of Hoa Binh.
Since 2010, at least 577 people have suffered the neurological disorder in the province, bringing the total so far to 1,200 since 2000. Of these, six people have died. In 2012 alone, the province reported 24 cases.
Meanwhile, only 12 cases were reported in the 2002-05 period thanks to proper support from domestic and foreign organisations, according to the provincial Preventive Medicine Centre.
Neuropathy is a collection of disorders that occur when nerves of the peripheral nervous system are damaged. It usually causes numbness, tingling or a burning sensation, especially in the hands and feet.
It might cause problems in walking, weakness and pain in the leg, vomiting, strange eye movements, congestive heart failure – leading to a rapid heartbeat, swelling of legs and shortness of breath.
The withdrawal of financial support from projects and poor communication are responsible for the increase in the number of people contracting the disorder, said Vu Quoc Hai, head of the centre’s Disease Control Department.
The provincial budget is only enough to treat serious cases, he said.
Officials have advised residents to contact their nearest healthcare centre if they spot any symptom of the disease.
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