Dengue, chikungunya, Japanese Encephalitis hit West Bengal

October 16th, 2008 - 5:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Oct 16 (IANS) Chikungunya, dengue and Japanese Encephalitis have affected at least 300 people in West Bengal in the last eight days, killing three people, health authorities said Thursday. “Himadri Adhikari of Budge Budge and 12-year-old Palash Sarkar of Nowdakhali have died of dengue so far. We have detected dengue and chikungunya virus in blood samples of about 250 people since Oct 9,” district chief medical officer (health) of South 24 Parganas Sachchidananda Sarkar said.

Himadri’s brother Supriyo said: “Himadri was suffering from high fever since Oct 2. But the doctors in our district could not detect the cause of the fever. A blood test in Kolkata Friday revealed that he was suffering from dengue. But it was too late.”

He said Himadri died Sunday at Rabindranath Tagore International Institute of Cardiac Sciences in Kolkata.

Himadri’s neighbour Gautam Das was admitted Tuesday to NRS Hospital in Kolkata with dengue, Supriyo added.

A senior doctor at NRS Hospital, where the 12-year-old Palash Sarkar died Monday, said: “Though the district report showed that Sarkar was suffering from dengue, the boy showed symptoms of chikungunya. But he died even before undergoing a blood test”.

The badly-hit areas include Behala in south Kolkata and six blocks of South 24 Parganas district - Budge Budge, Bishnupur, Mograhat, Falta, Nowdakhali and Joynagar.

Praloy Chowdhury, 34, died of Japanese Encephalitis Oct 9. He is the first victim of the disease in the city in 10 years.

“Chowdhury, a resident of Behala, was tested positive for Japanese Encephalitis in the confirmatory IgM test Sep 9. He was suffering from high fever and convulsions over the past three months and died at the School for Tropical Medicine (STM) at Thakurpukur in south Kolkata Oct 9,” said his brother-in-law Ajay Chatterjee.

However, despite the IgM report, chief civic health officer Debdaipayan Chattopadhyay said Chowdhury did not die of Japanese Encephalitis.

“The STM report shows Chowdhury died of pneumonia. He was suffering from Japanese Encephalitis one-and-a-half months ago,” Chattopadhyay said.

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