Thiruvananthapuram: The number of fever patients in Kerala remains high, with over 13,000 individuals seeking treatment for fever on Saturday (June 24). Malappuram has the highest number of patients at 2,110. Thiruvananthapuram, Palakkad, Ernakulam, Kannur, and Kozhikode districts also continue to report over a thousand cases of fever. These alarming figures emphasise the importance of not disregarding any signs of fever.

There has also been an increase in dengue cases, with 296 people exhibiting symptoms and 62 diagnosed with the disease. One dengue-related death was recorded Saturday. Additionally, there have been ten reported cases of leptospirosis. When considering the figures from the past week alone, over 80,000 individuals have been affected by fever. It is concerning that only the numbers of those seeking treatment at government hospitals are being reported, as many individuals who self-medicate and ignore symptoms may go unaccounted for.

Within the span of ten days, 11,462 people have been diagnosed with dengue fever. This month alone, 25 people have lost their lives due to dengue, while 14 have died from leptospirosis and nine from H1N1. It is crucial to seek medical attention for any severe or prolonged fever.

Dengue fever is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, which breed in freshwater. These mosquitoes primarily bite humans during the daytime. Symptoms typically appear within three to 14 days after the virus enters the body.

Early symptoms include a sudden onset of high fever, severe headache, pain behind the eyes, muscle and joint pain, red bumps on the chest and face, nausea, and vomiting.

If the fever subsides but the following symptoms persist - persistent vomiting, abdominal pain, bleeding from any part of the body, black stools, sudden shortness of breath, body redness, coldness, severe weakness, difficulty breathing, low blood pressure, or continuous crying in children - the patient should be immediately taken to a specialised hospital.

Early treatment is essential, and patients should ensure complete rest. Even after the fever subsides, individuals should remain vigilant for an additional three to four days. Rest and sleep under mosquito nets.

Mosquito control measures

  • Avoid stagnant water to prevent mosquito breeding.
  • Regularly remove and safely dispose of items that can collect water, such as unused straws, discarded plastic containers, non-biodegradable garbage, unused tires, buckets, etc.
  • Completely cover water tanks with netting or cloth to prevent mosquito entry.
  • Use mosquito repellent to avoid mosquito bites.
  • Wear clothing that covers the body.
  • Regularly eliminate mosquito breeding sites and observe dry days.

Leptospirosis symptoms

  • Fever, headache, and muscle aches accompanied by fatigue.
  • Redness in the eyes, loss of urine, and symptoms of jaundice may also be observed.
  • Can be transmitted through the urine of rats, dogs, cats, cattle, etc.
  • Pathogens present in the soil and water through urine can enter the body through wounds and cause the disease.
  • The disease is more common among those who work in fields, clean drains, ditches, canals, ponds, and water bodies, etc.

Preventive measures against leptospirosis

  • Animal handlers should always wear gloves and thick rubber boots when dealing with animals.
  • Exercise caution when handling dog and cat faeces and when working with livestock, ensuring personal safety.
  • Take necessary precautions to ensure that urine in cattle sheds does not contaminate water sources.
  • Always cover food and drinking water to prevent contamination from rodent droppings.
  • Keep children from entering standing water for recreational purposes, especially if they are injured.
  • Avoid attracting rats by disposing of food items responsibly and not throwing them away carelessly.

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