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Illness here bacterial, not viral

A Brookhaven woman, following her return Sunday from a trip toChina, is in good condition but being watched by local medicalauthorities.

Patti Perkins was hospitalized Monday after being diagnosed withpneumonia, and she remains in isolation at King’s Daughters MedicalCenter following a world-wide alert on a mysterious illness thathas claimed nine lives.

Perkins was hospitalized after reporting a high fever during hertwo-week trip to China. “Her white-blood count is back to normalthis morning, and they expect to release her tomorrow,” said herhusband Jimmy Perkins.

A world-wide health alert was issued Sunday after nine deathswere reported from a mysterious flu-like illness that appeared tooriginate in China. While there have been no new fatalitiesreported since this weekend, new cases have been reported inGermany and five other countries.

Doctors told Perkins this morning that her illness was bacterialand not viral. Due to the world-wide alert, she does come under theCenter for Disease Control (CDC) protocols. “They are takingspecimens and sending them to the CDC,” said Jimmy Perkins.

Perkins said she had an appointment with Dr. Ray Montalvo Mondayafternoon. After finding fluid on her lungs, he became concerneddue to the outbreak in China and the time she spent thererecently.

“She is responding to medication, but we are taking precautionsdue to where she has been,” Dr. Montalvo said this morning. “Hercase is more of a bacterial infection and does not appear to belinked to the severe acute respiratory syndrome.”

Due to the CDC precautions, family members are allowed onlylimited visits and must wear protective clothing and masks. “Herspirits are high she is looking forward to getting out,” said herdaughter, Holly Slay.