Amidst the ongoing vulnerable Covid-19, the rising cases of the Nipah virus in Kerala have started to raise the eyebrows of many. A day after the death of the 12-yo boy in Kerala’s Kozhikode district due to Nipah virus infection, traces of the virus were found in more people. According to health officials, a total of 251 persons have been identified who came in contact with the boy, who had succumbed to the Nipah virus.
Out of the 251 persons, 129 are healthcare workers and also include the mother of the deceased boy, said heath Minister Veena George. The minister said that among the 251 contacts, 54 have been identified as high-risk contacts out of which 30 are healthcare workers.
“There are 38 persons in isolation at the Kozhikode Medical College hospital of which 11 have shown symptoms. Samples of eight persons have been sent to Pune NIV for testing,” the minister said.
The Nipah virus (NiV) is a zoonotic virus (it is transmitted from animals to humans) and can also be transmitted through contaminated food or directly between people. In infected people, it causes a range of illnesses from asymptomatic (subclinical) infection to acute respiratory illness.
Infected people initially develop symptoms including fever, headaches, myalgia (muscle pain), vomiting, and sore throat. This can be followed by dizziness, drowsiness, altered consciousness, and neurological signs that indicate acute encephalitis.