After battling lumpy skin disease, Karnataka has reported the first case of the Zika virus. Health minister K Sudhakar revealed that a five-year-old girl from the Raichur district tested positive for the Zika virus. Following the case, the health department has asked people to take precautions and be on alert.
The state administration has also informed the health department to begin all preventive measures from Tuesday to control the surge, especially after the first case of the disease has been discovered.
A 5-year-old girl develops Zika virus in Karnataka
It was reported that the girl caught a fever on November 13. She was found to be suffering from dengue illness at first. However, she was later found to be suffering from Zika virus.
Reports suggest that the authorities compiled the travel history of the girl and her family. Security measures have already been put in place in the girl’s neighbourhood and immediate surroundings. So far, five people have tested negative suggests the blood reports.
If reports are to be believed, the situation might get worse with the Mandous cyclone. The chilly and rainy weather in the state might make things worse because the virus spreads more quickly in these conditions.
What is Zika virus?
First identified in Uganda in 1947, the World Health Organisation (WHO) defines Zika virus as a vector-borne disease that spreads through the bite of an infected mosquito of the Aedes genus. It spreads just like dengue and chikungunya. The disease can also be transferred from a pregnant woman to the fetus, through sexual contact and organ transplantation.
As per WHO, the majority of Zika virus victims do not exhibit any symptoms. When they develop, they often begin 3–14 days after infection, are mild in nature, and last 2–7 days. Symptoms of the disease include:
Since both arboviral and non-arboviral diseases share these symptoms, laboratory testing is necessary to establish the diagnosis of Zika virus infection. It must be distinguished from cross-reactive related flaviviruses like the dengue virus, to which the patient may have been exposed or previously immunised, as per WHO.
Diagnosis and treatment of Zika virus
Diagnosis of Zika virus can be done through blood tests and testing of bodily fluids.
Several medical authorities have pointed out that there is no specific treatment for infection or sickness caused by the Zika virus.
How you should prevent the risk?
People who experience symptoms such as a rash, fever, or joint discomfort should obtain plenty of rest, drink plenty of water, and use antipyretics and/or analgesics to relieve their symptoms.
Due to the danger of bleeding, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines should be avoided until dengue virus infections have been ruled out. Patients should seek medical attention and counselling if their symptoms get worse, advises WHO.
(With inputs from agencies)