A seven-year-old boy from Kerala’s Malappuram district who tested positive for West Nile fever last week passed away in Kozhikode Medical college on Monday.
Muhammad Shan, a resident of Vengara in Malappuram, was the first case of West Nile fever reported in Kerala. He was being treated at the Kozhikode Medical College college for the past one week. After he was tested positive, the authorities issued a high alert in Kerala’s north Malabar region for West Nile fever.
Speaking to TNM, Deputy Medical Officer Malappuram Dr Ismail confirmed that the death happened around 3 am on Monday morning.
West Nile fever which is contracted from infected mosquitoes is relatively unknown in the region, barring a few sporadic cases being reported in the past year. The mosquitoes contract the virus from infected birds.
Speaking to TNM, Malappuram DIstrict Medical Officer Dr Sakina had stated that this was a one off case and that people should not be worried as person to person transmission was not possible.
However, there exists no vaccine for the fever as yet and that treatment is generally based on symptoms that the person shows. The symptoms include common cold, fever, body ache, headache, fatigue and nausea. Complications can also occur leading to meningitis and the patient can even succumb to the illness.
A two member team of experts from the National Centre for Disease Control had visited Malappuram to advise state authorities on how to manage the disease.