The deadly Nipah virus has so far claimed 10 lives and 12 out of 18 samples tested positive in Kerala. This the virus is reported to be spread by fruit bats and other animals that can be transmitted to humans as well. So far, no cure or vaccine has been found for the deadly virus. First identified in 1999 when the pig farmers in Singapore and Malaysia became very sick, the Nipah virus is a highly contagious and deadly virus. So far, most of the common sign include a headache, fever, nausea, dizziness, drowsiness and mental issues such as confusion. These symptoms can last up to 7-10 days. It’s then possible for these symptoms to progress to a coma.
Transmission and Risk Behind It:
Outbreak for the Nipah Virus is possible due to the common reasons mentioned below:
1. People working with pigs and consuming pork as the meat.
2. Farmers who come in contact with bats in their farms or open wells that serve as a housing space for the bats.
3. Consuming fruits which are already bitten by the bat.
4. Direct contact with people who already have Nipah virus infection.
Symptoms and Diagnosis:
It is essential for one to keep an eye out for influenzas like symptoms such as a sore throat, fever, headaches, vomiting and muscle pain. These symptoms are reported to further progress into acute respiratory infection causing trouble in breathing. Neck rigidity and photophobia are also seen during the symptoms phase. In severe cases, the virus is reported to cause symptoms that can lead to come in 24-48 hours and eventually causes death. According to reports, the mortality rate in humans is estimated to be 74%.
Manipal Hosptial doctors are making some breakthrough as a ray of hope to cure the Nipah Virus.
Here are some prevention measures that you can take to minimize the risk of transmitting the virus:
- Avoid contact with pigs and pig handlers.
- Maintain personal hygiene and intensive hand washing practices
- Avoid consuming raw fruits, consume only well cooked, clean, homemade food till the outbreak settles down
- Preferably use N95 mask while travelling or working in public places to avoid person to person transmission.
- Be aware of the symptoms and report to the doctor immediately for early diagnosis and treatment.
Health officials in Kerala along with experts from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences and the Indian National Center for Disease Control (NCDC) are taking preventive measures to keep the outbreak in control. Travelers traveling from or to Kozhikode are being screened in Karnataka, Tamilnadu and Goa for signs and symptoms. If you notice any of the symptoms in people around you or experience these symptoms yourself, please visit a health clinic or consult your doctor at the earliest.