GUWAHATI: About 90 percent of dengue cases reported in Assam are in Karbi Anglong, a hilly district in the state quite alien to dengue till 2020–21. Total dengue cases in the state as of September 26, 2023, are 6,159 with over 5,000 cases in the Karbi Hills alone.
According to Joint Director of Health Borsing Rongpi, Karbi Anglong, dengue has four different varieties: DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, and DENV-4. The occurrence of three of these four varieties in Karbi Anglong has deteriorated the situation.
To ascertain the cause of such widespread dengue in the Karbi Anglong district, a team from the office of the Regional Directorate of Health and Family Welfare, Shillong, Government of India, visited the hill district and conducted a survey. An ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) team from Dibrugarh will also visit the hill district shortly.
According to Rongpi, the team of experts from Shillong found that a large-scale gathering in the hill district during an Army recruitment rally in 2022 is one of the reasons behind such a massive occurrence of dengue in the hill district. According to the findings, around 44,000 job aspirants from various regions of the country had been staying in Karbi Anglong for about three months. Since Diphu is a small town without much accommodation for such a rush of people, some of the job aspirants had to stay in the railway station, congested hotel rooms, bus stations, and whatnot. The findings of the survey say that some of the job aspirants were certainly carriers of dengue but did not show symptoms as they were young and energetic. Dengue occurred in the hill district in a massive way last year, and the same is the situation this year.
Most of the patients ridden with dengue in the hill district are labourers who hardly follow hygiene. Though the authorities concerned carry out awareness drives among them, the situation is not under control, Rongpi said.
Statistics say that on September 19, Karbi Anglong reported 35 dengue cases compared to 17 in the rest of the state; Karbi Anglong reported 63 cases compared to 19 in the rest of the state on September 20; Karbi Anglong reported 55 cases compared to 10 in the rest of the state on September 21; and Karbi Anglong had 66 cases against 24 in the rest of the state on September 22.
A team from Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) has been camping in Karbi Anglong and monitoring the situation regularly.
The common symptoms of dengue are high fever, headache, body ache, nausea, rashes, etc. Dengue has no permanent medicine. The patients often take painkillers and get cured within ten days. Some people develop severe dengue and need daily care in hospitals.
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