On reaching Cochin on Friday, 36-year-old Jainesh was taken to hospital as he was suffering from cough and fatigue.

Kerala man whose first sample for coronavirus was negative dies of pneumonia
news Coronavirus Saturday, February 29, 2020 - 10:37

A Kerala man who was admitted to the isolation ward at the Kalamassery Medical College hospital in Ernakulam on his return from Malaysia passed away on Saturday. The 36-year-old deceased man has been identified as Jainesh. He was admitted to the isolation ward with suspected coronavirus on Friday.

However, Jainesh’s body fluid samples, which were tested at the National Institute of Virology in Alappuzha, returned negative for both H1N1 and COVID-19 (coronavirus), although the result of the second sample is awaited.

Jainesh, who has been working in Malaysia for the last 2.5 years, had arrived at the Cochin International Airport on Friday. He was soon taken to the hospital as he was suffering from cough and fatigue. According to reports, he also suffered from breathlessness and pneumonia that had affected his lungs.

“The first test report has come and he has been tested negative for coronavirus. However, we are doing further tests to rule out any sort of communicable diseases,” Dr RL Saritha, Director of Health Services, told TNM.

She said that Jainesh’s clinical history will be handled by the hospital concerned.

However, according to reports, a detailed examination revealed that Jainesh had suffered from Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). This is a condition seen in diabetics, wherein the body cannot produce enough insulin to breakdown glucose. It results in an increased level of ketones, a toxic chemical, in the bloodstream and can be fatal if not treated.

“Preliminary investigation has established bilateral pneumonia and Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome as the reason for death. We have also understood that he was a diabetic. At the time of death his blood sugar was very high. Blood sugar can flare up when there is an infection and an infection can flare when the blood sugar is high,” Dr Ganesh Mohan, Resident Medical Officer of Kalamassery Medical College Hospital told TNM.

According to reports, District Collector S Suhas took stock of the situation and also visited the isolation ward of the hospital. An emergency meeting was also convened with the Collector and hospital authorities.

Meanwhile, 17 people in the district have been put under observation. Five of the samples were sent to the NIV laboratory in Alappuzha for testing.

The first three confirmed cases of novel coronavirus were reported in Kerala. However, the Kerala government successfully managed to curtail the spread of the virus in the state. All these patients were tested negative on retests and were discharged.

In China, where the virus originated, a total of 79,251 cases have been confirmed. As of Saturday, 47 more people have died after contracting the virus, taking the country’s death toll to 2,835.

Although the World Health Organisation (WHO) revised the risk of coronavirus from High to Very High at a global level, it has not been declared a pandemic. WHO officials also told PTI that the course of the epidemic can be altered through robust public health systems and containment measures. Kerala’s success in curtailing epidemics such as COVID-19, and earlier Nipah virus, has been credited to its efficient public health system.

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