DUP's Edwin Poots speaks of shock after son falls ill in Amazon rainforest
DUP MLA Edwin Poots has spoken of his shock after learning his son became seriously ill while working in Brazil.
Samuel Poots (26), contracted a fever earlier this week while doing missionary work in the Amazon rainforest.
He went to a doctor and was diagnosed with Leptospirosis, also known as Weil's disease, which is a bacterial infection spread by animals.
It is spread in the urine of rats, mice and cows and can contaminate soil and freshwater, where it is passed to humans. Leptospirosis is rare in the UK and can prove fatal if left untreated.
"Samuel had been feeling unwell for a number of days and eventually he came out of the rainforest and went to see a doctor. He got the results of his blood test back yesterday and found out he had Leptospirosis.
"It was really shocking to learn, especially for us as a family as my uncle in fact died of the disease a number of years ago over here. He was working outside and contracted it from rat urine and it proved fatal. So we as a family are familiar with how serious it can be and it's extremely worrying.
"We've asked all our friends to pray for Samuel to make a full recovery. Since they've diagnosed what it is and he is getting the right treatment, we are hopeful that he can make a full recovery."
Belfast Telegraph Digital