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Symptoms of Viral Fevers Differ from Dengue, Say Experts as Telangana Hospitals See Heavy Rush

Health department officials said that MAC-ELISA test is ideal for confirming dengue while advising against the use of Rapid Diagnosis Test for the purpose.

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Updated:September 9, 2019, 1:52 PM IST
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Symptoms of Viral Fevers Differ from Dengue, Say Experts as Telangana Hospitals See Heavy Rush
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With over 50 suspected deaths and hundreds of confirmed dengue cases, Telangana has been reeling under the fear of the mosquito-borne disease. This week dengue claimed the lives of three people, according to private hospitals, while authorities said these cases would be treated as “suspected dengue case” until their investigation proved otherwise.

A five-year-old girl was among two persons who died of dengue on Wednesday, September 4, a Times of India (TOI) reported. On Tuesday, a 13-year-old boy had died of dengue in a private hospital. His death had led to protests by hundreds of concerned parents at a school where hygiene and sanitation aren’t allegedly up to the mark.

Reports of suspected dengue have prompted the government to take additional measures to keep dengue, malaria, chikungunya and other mosquito-borne diseases under check by clearing garbage and improving sanitation. Meanwhile, officials from the state health department said a large number of people suffering from viral fevers are rushing to hospitals to get them checked for dengue.

Superintendent of Sir Ronald Ross Institute of Tropical and Communicable Diseases (Fever Hospital), Dr. K. Shankar told The Hindu that dengue and viral fevers can be distinguished on the basis of symptoms.

“Influenza-A (viral fevers) and dengue has similar symptoms, which are cold, cough, headache, body pains, fever. However, those who suffer from dengue might have rashes on body which look like blood clots. While body temperature does not reach 101 degrees F or 103 degrees F in case of viral fevers, those who suffer from dengue might record 103 degrees F to 104 degrees F,” Dr Shankar explained.

Stressing that not all viral fevers are dengue, the doctor added that apart from rashes on the body, those who have dengue might suffer from excruciating pain. “It is also called as break bone fever since the pain people suffer is alike to the pain experienced during fractures,” he said.

Health department officials said that MAC-ELISA test is ideal for confirming dengue while advising against the use of Rapid Diagnosis Test for the purpose.

While platelets count drops in dengue, officials cited World Health Organization guidelines that state that platelets have to be transfused only when the platelet count drops to below 20,000 with bleeding or below 10,000 without bleeding.

They warned that transfusion of platelets when the count is not below 50,000 to 60,000 could prove to be harmful.

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