Published Date: 2012-06-04 10:30:22
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Japanese encephalitis & other - India: (BI)
Archive Number: 20120604.1155306
JAPANESE ENCEPHALITIS AND OTHER - INDIA: (BIHAR)
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Sat 2 Jun 2012
Source: Two Circles, Indo Asian News Service (IANS) [edited]
Suspected encephalitis has killed 15 children in Bihar's Muzaffarpur and Gaya districts in the last week, officials said Saturday [2 Jun 2012].
The mosquito-borne disease [presumably caused by Japanese encephalitis virus], which claimed nearly 150 lives last year , has returned with a vengeance and 11 children have died in Muzaffarpur and 4 in Gaya. Over 2 dozen children have been admitted to hospitals in both places.
According to officials, 24 children have been admitted for treatment in hospitals in Muzaffarpur, about 70 km [44 mi] from here [Patna].
Muzaffarpur civil surgeon Gayan Bhusan said the children died after contracting high fever followed by convulsions.
"Nearly half a dozen children are battling for life in Gaya," said AK Ravi, a child specialist at one hospital.
Encephalitis is a condition of acute inflammation of the brain resulting either from a viral infection or when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks the brain tissue.
ProMED-mail from HealthMap alerts
[Last year (2011) there were numerous reports of viral encephalitis in Bihar state from June through December. The Japanese encephalitis (JE) virus transmission season there appears to have started again. The 29 Dec 2011 report from the Minister of Health and Family Welfare indicated that 1133 JE virus deaths were reported in 2011 alone. Of these, 575 deaths were reported in Gorakhpur and Basti divisions of Uttar Pradesh, 250 in Orissa, and 197 in Bihar. He maintained that since 2006 vaccines have been introduced and these have brought down the number of JE cases (see ProMED-mail archive no. 20111231.3729).
The report above does not indicate if there has been a recent JE virus vaccination campaign in the affected area. As in previous reports from last year (2011), in this report, Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) is the only etiological agent mentioned as responsible for these encephalitis cases. Previous reports from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar states in 2011 implicated JEV in approximately one-third of the encephalitis cases, the majority being due to undiagnosed viruses, perhaps enteroviruses, associated with contaminated water.
A HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map showing the location of Bihar state can be accessed at http://healthmap.org/r/1*O9. - Mod.TY]