ADVERTISEMENT

Nipah Virus in Kerala: Here’s How You Can Protect Yourself

Here’s all you need to know about the Nipah virus and how you can avoid getting sick.

Updated
Fit
2 min read
Nipah Virus in Kerala: Here’s How You Can Protect Yourself
i

After much speculation, the Kerala government has confirmed Nipah virus in a 23-year-old man who had been admitted to a private hospital in Ernakulam on May 30.

The confirmation came in from the National Institute of Virology (NIV) in Pune on 4 June.

Soon there will be misinformed WhatsApp forwards doing the rounds which will not only add to the fear but will also be gravely misleading. So make sure you get your facts right.

Here’s all you need to know about the Nipah virus and how you can avoid getting sick:

ADVERTISEMENT

What is Nipah Virus?

Nipah virus, or NiV infection, is an infectious disease that causes severe illness in animals and humans. It spreads through infected fruit bats, pigs, or from other infected people.

Nipah virus is fairly new. The virus was first identified in 1998 in Malaysia and pigs were identified as the intermediate host. It spread to humans after they came in contact with pig feces and excretions. The virus has also been found in species of domestic animals including dogs, cats, goats, horses and sheep after they came in contact with pigs.

Symptoms & Treatment

Some of the symptoms of this disease are fever, headache, drowsiness, disorientation, mental confusion and in certain cases, coma. Once diagnosed, the patient must be kept in total isolation.

There is still no vaccination available for this virus so the treatment is largely focused on managing fever and neurological symptoms.

How Can You Avoid Getting Sick?

  • Since the Nipah virus can spread if you come in contact with infected animals or people, it is very important to maintain high levels of personal hygiene.
  • Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly and cover your mouth if you are in an infected area.
  • The primary carrier of this virus are fruit bats and they often drop half eaten fruits which might be consumed by other animals or humans and spread the infection. So it is advised that you avoid consuming pork or drinking date palm sap in the infected areas.
  • Avoid eating fruits in the infected areas till source of infection is identified.
Travellers should avoid visits to endemic areas until the disease is curtailed and in case of recent transit they should look out for symptoms like fever, headache and cough and will need to seek medical care immediately.
Dr Mahesh Kumar, Consultant - Internal Medicine, Narayana Health City, Bengaluru

And most importantly, don’t panic! It’s always important to be aware and take preventive measures.

If you have any questions, then you can write to us at fit@thequint.com and we will get doctors to answer them for you.

(Have you subscribed to FIT’s newsletter yet? Click here and get health updates directly in your inbox.)

(This story was auto-published from a syndicated feed. No part of the story has been edited by The Quint.)

(The Quint is available on Telegram. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram)

We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated.

Liked this story? We'll send you more. Subscribe to The Quint's newsletter and get selected stories delivered to your inbox every day. Click to get started.

The Quint is available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, click to join.

ADVERTISEMENT
Published: 
Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Quint Insider
25
100
200

or more

PREMIUM

3 months
12 months
12 months
Check Insider Benefits
ADVERTISEMENT
Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!
ADVERTISEMENT
×
×