Video Producer & Editor: Garima Sadhwani
More than 4,000 cases of dengue have been recorded in Bengaluru since July, data shared by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike revealed, as health authorities ring alarm bells asking citizens to exercise caution.
In the first eight days of September alone, the state government data said 416 cases have been recorded.
“Across the state, in the recent past, more than 7,000 dengue cases have been reported. Among these, more than 4,000 dengue cases are reported in Bengaluru city alone,” CM Siddaramaiah said.
What are the symptoms to watch out for? What precautions should you be taking? FIT spoke to experts.
Why is Bengaluru witnessing a spike in dengue cases right now?
"Usually, this spike happens during early monsoon. But this time, rain in Bengaluru has been inconsistent and stagnated water is not draining as it should be. For example, it is very hot in the morning and suddenly it starts raining. So water that should ideally be drained, continues to stay," said Dr Nasiruddin G, Consultant Internal Medicine, Fortis Hospital, Cunningham, Bangalore.
"This is why Bengaluru is witnessing a late spike in dengue. The water drains when there is continuous rains, but short and inconsistent bursts of rain make this difficult, leading to further breeding of mosquitoes," he added.
According to Dr Dinesh Kamat, Consultant, Internal Medicine, Manipal Hospital, Malleshwaram, patients are presenting "extreme tiredness or fatigue" and fever.
The symptoms of dengue, which usually last for 2-7 days and appear approximately 4-7 after the mosquito bite, are:
Joint and muscle pains
Pain in the belly, behind the eyes, in your bones
Vomiting (multiple times a day)
Mild bleeding (from the nose and gums, while vomiting, or in the stool)
Fatigue and restlessness
Who should get tested?
"Usually, patients take a paracetamol if they have fever. But if your temperature does not go down after two or three days, then we suggest blood tests," says Dr Kamat.
Private hospitals across Bengaluru are witnessing at least 3-4 admissions every day due to dengue, the experts added.
"While children are prone to the disease, we see more cases of people between 20-40 age group," Dr Nasiruddin added.
What are the diagnostic tests for dengue?
Dengue can be diagnosed using two tests:
NS-1 Ag: Detects the virus up to six days after the onset of the infection
Dengue serology: Detects the virus five days after the onset of illness
Is dengue contagious?
While dengue is not contagious, it can spread from mosquito bites from a person suffering from the virus to a healthy person. It can also pass on from a pregnant person to an unborn child.
What are some preventive steps to avoid dengue infection?
According to both Dr Kamat and Dr Nasiruddin:
Prevent mosquito breeding by disposing off waste properly.
Pay attention to removing artificial water habitats, removing stagnant water from mugs and potted plants, covering/cleaning water containers, and screening any vector hotspots near you.
Use repellants, mosquito nets, coils, etc.
Wear full-sleeved clothes.
Spread awareness on control and safety measures.
Which parts of India are witnessing a spike in dengue cases?
Apart from Bengaluru, other cities in India are also witnessing a spike in dengue cases. These include:
Cases have also increased in Bihar.