It’s been more than two weeks you might have read the news about a virus that has killed peoples in the state of Kerala. This virus is Nipah Virus, is not only the problem but issue that is currently making headlines. Spreading among individuals and also a fatal illness that doesn’t discriminate. Till now more than 13 people have died from this including a nurse who left a heartbreaking note to her family.
What is Nipah Virus?
The NiV (Nipah Virus) is an emerging zoonosis pathogen that causes a severe disease in both animals and humans with disturbing abilities. Nipah Virus is not a new virus, it has been first found in 1999 among farmers in Singapore and Malaysia. It was transferred from infected pigs, bats or humans who have been infected.
How Nipah Virus Spread?
The Nipah Virus spread directly from human to human by coming in contact with infected person, eating fruits that have been partially eaten by infected bats, partially cooked meat of infected animals. It is mostly spread by bats and pigs.
In India and Bangladesh, the source of infection is date palm sap. Palm sap tastes like a bit of sugarcane juice quite a sweet. The bats sit and feed on date palm sap and infect it by licking it or passing urine or feces into it. Then this juice is gathered by the humans and consumed without being heated cause heating would also destroy this virus. This is how infection is spread.
Symptoms of Nipah Virus
Expert says that Nipah Virus is airborne. It can affect those who come in direct contact with the infected ones. Once the virus enters your body, the virus takes between 5 to 14 days to lead to the development of the symptoms. The symptoms of this virus include fever, headache, fainting, nausea, vomiting, muscle pain (myalgia), and feeling of generalized tiredness.
The virus also leads to respiratory infection (mild to severe) causing a problem while breathing. During this phase, people experience atypical pneumonia and acute respiratory distress, which further leads to severe problems. This virus is usually associate with inflammation of the brain and this can then lead to a state of confusion, disorientation and even persistent drowsiness. The patient can possibly go into a coma just two days after the symptoms begin.
Prevention of Nipah Virus –
- Avoid close and physical contact with infected people
- Wear masks in public places
- Check fruits before eating and buying whether eaten by animals
- Wash hands with soaps and use hand sanitizer
- Boil freshly collected date palm juice before consuming
- Maintain your and children’s personal hygiene
- Avoid exposure to sick pigs and bats in areas where the virus is present
Diagnosis and Treatment of Nipah Virus –
There is no specific test that can diagnose Nipah Virus. For now, only symptoms of Nipah Virus you have to consider and should seek medical help.
Unlike diagnosis, there is no cure or treatment for Nipah Virus. Primarily one can only support humans bodies by providing fluid and medicines to stop vomiting and nausea. And Painkillers may be given for headaches.
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