13 test positive with ‘most potent’ dengue strain in Agra

AGRA: After Firozabad, DENV-2 strain of dengue has surfaced as a major cause of concern for the health department in Agra district. Out of the 25 samples sent by the SN Medical College for serotyping analysis to KGMU in Lucknow, 13 have tested positive for the DENV-2 strain of dengue. These patients belonging to the age group 6 to 45 are undergoing treatment.
According to the health department records, 149 dengue cases have surfaced in Agra in the last three weeks. Besides, 23 people suffering from viral fever and dengue symptoms have died in the district. Out of these, 19 were children.
According to SNMC principal Dr Prashant Gupta, out of the four serotypes of the dengue virus that can cause infection, DENV-2 is the most potent and results in “hemorrhagic fever” among children. It can also lead to fatal internal bleeding and dengue shock syndrome in patients.
“The symptoms caused by DENV-2 include continuous vomiting, abdominal pain, high-grade fever, weak pulse, restlessness, confusion, irritability, cold clammy skin, and bleeding gums and nose,” said Agra chief medical officer Arun Kumar Srivastav.
“So far, one death due to dengue and 22 due to viral fever have been registered. A majority of these were children,” Srivastav added. The maximum number of deaths have been reported from Bah and Pinahat, Fatehpur Sikri in Agra rural, Tedi Bagia under Itmad-ud-daulah police station, Etmadpur and other areas of the district.
Virendra Singh, a resident of Modipura village, said, “Every house in the village has a family member suffering from high fever and dengue symptoms. The community health centres are not admitting patients. The district hospital and SN Medical College are over 60 km away from the village. Patients are suffering at home.”
Meanwhile, at least four more deaths of patients suffering from high fever were reported in the last 24 hours in Firozabad district. Besides, 2 died in Etah, one in Kasganj and 2 in Mainpuri. In the last one week, over two dozen deaths due to viral fever and dengue-like symptoms have also been reported in Aligarh, Mathura, Hathras, Meerut, Bareilly and districts of eastern UP.
According to the health department officials, so far over 5,000 cases of dengue have been confirmed in Agra. Out of these, the majority are from Firozabad district. A few cases of malaria, scrub typhus (a bacterial illness spread by larval mites) and leptospirosis (bacterial disease spread through the urine of infected animals) have also been reported.

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