Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Four more deaths caused by chikungunya, says MCD

The death of four people at Delhi’s Hindu Rao Hospital, which is run by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), was caused due to chikungunya, officials of the municipal corporation of Delhi said. The deaths will be confirmed as having been caused by the vector-borne disease soon.

The Delhi government, which had reviewed 13 deaths related to chikungunya, had so far maintained that none of the people succumbed to the disease. The government’s review committee had, however, reserved its judgement on three cases — including one from Hindu Rao Hospital — for want of more documents.

Two of the four deaths at Hindu Rao were directly caused by the chikungunya virus.
One of them, 4-year-old Pika, was admitted to the hospital on September 17 and passed away five days later. The cause of death was viral meningoencephalitis, swelling and inflammation of the brain and its membrane.

“Since she was brought in with high fever, she was tested for dengue, chikungunya, Japanese encephalitis and malaria at National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD). Except for chikungunya, she tested negative for all the other diseases. So, clearly it is a death caused by chikungunya,” said Dr DK Seth, director of hospital administration at North corporation, which runs Hindu Rao Hospital.

The second patient, 22-year-old Isha, died of cardiac arrest at the hospital on September 1. “The chikungunya virus can affect the brain and the heart. In this case, the girl did not have any pre-existing conditions, but developed myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle) and died of a cardiac arrest,” said Dr Seth.

In the other two cases, the virus aggravated the co-morbid conditions causing the patients to die from complications. The death summary of 75-year-old VK Gupta says that he died on September 11 of multi-organ failure with sepsis (blood infection) with underlying conditions like diabetes and chikungunya.

Fifty eight-years-old Ram Bhajan died of kidney failure and deficiency of platelets causing internal bleeding; diabetes and chikungunya were the co-morbid conditions.

Three of the four deaths reported by Hindu Rao Hospital are from within Delhi, with one patient coming from Ghaziabad. Although these deaths happened one month to two weeks ago, they have not been included in the weekly report released by the MCD on Monday, which had recorded the number of cases up to October 1 at 5,293.

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