Trekker missing for 47 days rescued in Nepal, friend dead

Taiwanese Liang Sheng Yueh smiles as he undergoes treatment at a hospital after being rescued, Kathmandu, Nepal on Wednesday. (Reuters)
Updated 27 April 2017

Trekker missing for 47 days rescued in Nepal, friend dead

KATMANDU, Nepal: A Taiwanese man who was missing on a mountain in Nepal for 47 days was rescued Wednesday, but his girlfriend died just three days before they were discovered, trekking officials said.
Asian Trekking agency official Madhav Basnet said 21-year-old Liang Sheng Yueh was found Wednesday on a ledge under a waterfall and was flown by helicopter to a hospital in the capital, Katmandu. He said the body of his girlfriend, 19-year-old Liu Chen Chun, was also taken to the capital.
They were on a long trek on the Ganesh Himal trail, which is not as crowded as other popular routes, and were caught in a snowstorm in March and lost their way.
According to Basnet, they appeared to have followed a river hoping to find a village but slipped and fell over a waterfall. They landed on the ledge and were unable to climb up or down. The area is an altitude of 2,600 meters (8,520 feet).
Basnet said the weather improved a few days after the snowstorm, but the temperature was unclear.
They had no guides or porters and were carrying their own food, tent and sleeping bags.
For the first two weeks they survived on food they had in their backpacks but after that they consumed only salt and water, he said.
Rescuers first scoured the area for two weeks before suspending their search, but resumed the search on April 20.
Basnet said they spotted a red tent and managed to climb down.
“We found the man alive and able to speak to us, but the woman was already dead. We could not carry them so we called a helicopter,” Basnet said.
The man was winched up by the helicopter and immediately flown to Katmandu, followed by the body of the woman.
The man appeared to be in good health in the emergency room.
“He appears exhausted and lost some 30 kilograms of body weight,” said Ajay Singh Thapa, a doctor at the Grande Hospital. “He was suffering from severe malnutrition. His foot was covered with maggots and hair full of lice. Despite having to live like that for 47 days, he appears to be mostly normal.”
He said the man probably could survive because he was able to get both salt and water in his body.
The man said he spent the past three days next to the body of his dead girlfriend.


China asks recovered patients to donate plasma for virus treatment

Updated 17 February 2020

China asks recovered patients to donate plasma for virus treatment

  • Drugmakers are racing to develop a vaccine and treatment for the epidemic

BEJING: Chinese health officials Monday urged patients who have recovered from the coronavirus to donate blood so that plasma can be extracted to treat others who are critically ill.
Drugmakers are racing to develop a vaccine and treatment for the epidemic, which has which killed 1,770 people and infected over 70,500 people across China.
Plasma from patients who have recovered from a spell of pneumonia triggered by COVID-19 contains antibodies that can help reduce the virus load in critically ill patients, an official from China’s National Health Commission told a press briefing Monday.
“I would like to make a call to all cured patients to donate their plasma so that they can bring hope to critically ill patients,” said Guo Yanhong, who heads the NHC’s medical administration department.
Eleven patients at a hospital in Wuhan — the epicenter of the disease — received plasma infusions last week, said Sun Yanrong, of the Biological Center at the Ministry of Science and Technology.
“One patient (among them) has already been discharged, one is able to get off the bed and walk and the others are all recovering,” she said.
The call comes days after China’s state-owned medical products maker reported successful results from its trial at Wuhan First People’s Hospital.
China National Biotec Group Co. said in a post on its official WeChat account that severely ill patients receiving plasma infusions “improved within 24 hours.”
“Clinical studies have shown that infusing plasma (from recovered patients) is safe and effective,” Sun said.
Blood doners will undergo a test to ensure that they are not carrying the virus, said Wang Guiqiang, chief physician at Peking University First Hospital.
“Only plasma is taken, not all the blood,” he said.
“Other components of the blood including red blood cells and platelets will be infused back into the donors.”