BANGALORE: The city has been in the grip of dengue over the last two months. The number of positive cases has risen from 373 on July 27 to 560 on September 14.
The statewide scene is similar. Karnataka reported 21 deaths till September 14 and 2,164 positive cases of dengue. The corresponding figures for July 27 were 10 and 1,184, respectively.
Bangalore has reported at least one death a week due to suspected dengue fever since July, but the department of communicable diseases and health and family welfare department say that only four persons have died of confirmed dengue cases in the city so far.
Physicians and pediatricians do not agree with the government statistics though. They say that the incidence of dengue is rising and the government needs to act fast.
Said Dr IS Srinivas Murthy, consultant physician, Fortis Hospitals: "About 4-5 of 10 fever cases every week turn out to be cases of dengue-like fever. The symptoms can be similar to that of viral fever, but one need to identify the symptoms in time."
"The myth is that dengue fever is usually fatal. Whereas the reality is that even the severe forms of dengue, if recognized early, are salvageable (mortality is less than 1 %). It may not be possible to prevent mosquito bites, but it is definitely possible to recognize early and prevent dengue-related complications," said Dr Gnanam Ramasubramaniam, consultant-pediatric emergency and PICU, Manipal Hospital.
Dr Gnanam added that it is ignorance among parents and patients to recognize the symptoms, which sometimes makes the situation out of control. "We need to spread awareness about the symptoms and precautions related to dengue to control the disease in a better way," she said.
"Productive young citizens who go out to work during day and children playing outdoor are most prone to dengue fever. Also, pregnant women have low immunity which makes them prone to it. The recent piling of garbage in the city increased cases of dengue-like fever in the city," said Dr Hemanth HR, consultant, critical care medicine, BGS Global Hospitals.