Encephalitis claims lives of 15 children in Bihar's Muzaffarpur; special ward set up for heat-related ailments

Deaths of 15 children were reported on Sunday in an encephalitis outbreak in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur, according to CNN-News18. Forty cases of the viral infection were reported at the government hospital in the district, where a special ward was set up to deal with heat-related ailments.

 Encephalitis claims lives of 15 children in Bihars Muzaffarpur; special ward set up for heat-related ailments

Representational image. PTI

Dr Gopal Sahni, head of Critical Care Unit at Shri Krishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCH), told ANI on Saturday, "When heat and humidity rise, the body's sweat cannot evaporate. The humidity level is over 50 percent in the last few days. We have about 15 such children admitted in the hospital currently. Eight-nine such cases come regularly."

A similar outbreak was also reported in adjoining districts Vaishali, Sheohar and East and West Champaran, according to The New Indian Express. Between January and May, 21 children in areas in and around the Vaishali district succumbed to encephalitis.

Meanwhile, Kerala, which witnessed a Nipah scare, is also keeping a close watch on encephalitis and meningitis cases in Kozhikode and Malappuram districts, reported The Hindu. To avoid the possibility of Nipah cases getting passed off as encephalitis or meningitis, the state health department has ordered that body fluid samples of suspected cases be sent for detailed lab tests.

Encephalitis is a viral infection which results in the inflammation of the brain, causing mild flu-like symptoms such as a fever, drowsiness and headache.

With inputs from agencies

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Updated Date: Jun 09, 2019 17:47:09 IST