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A man who was undergoing treatment for the fever at Kozhikode Medical College, succumbed on Sunday.

5 cases of Monkey fever confirmed in Wayanad district officials on high alertImage for representation
Health Monkey Fever Monday, March 25, 2019 - 13:07

Wayanad district is on high alert after 10 suspected cases of monkey fever were reported, with 5 of them being confirmed as monkey fever. One man who was undergoing treatment for the fever at Kozhikode Medical College tested positive and succumbed to monkey fever on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as  27-year-old Sundaran from Kattikulam Begur Colony.

“We are working with officials from the Karnataka state health department who handled the outbreak of the fever in Shivamogga. All officials in the district are on high alert and we are working to ensure that awareness is being effectively executed, particularly among tribal groups, and forest workers, who are prone to coming in contact with ticks which may cause the disease,” stated Dr Renuka R, District Medical Officer (DMO) of Wayanad to TNM.

She further added that vaccination efforts have already taken place with the guidance of the officials who had handled the outbreaks in Shivamogga district in January.

“People are also being encouraged to use personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves, and also to use the appropriate repellants before going into the forest areas. Several of them find the vaccine to be painful and are hesitant to take them after the first dose, so we are stressing the importance of PPE,” added the DMO.

The vaccine for monkey fever consists of 3 doses which are given on the first day, second day, and sixth day.

Monkey fever, or Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD), is a tick-borne disease which was first reported from Karnataka’s Shivamogga district in 1957, according to the National Centre for Disease Control. It spread to other parts of the country and has been noted to occur in Wayanad and Malappuram districts of Kerala.

KFD is caused by a virus which belongs to the member of the flavivirus genus. It is transmitted to humans via infected ticks which are commonly found on monkeys, as a result of which it is also known as monkey fever. Symptoms include sudden onset of high grade fever, nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea as well as bleeding tendencies.

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