The encephalitis outbreak in India rises the death toll to 400. The viral disease put hundreds of children to critical condition, and eventually to death. To date, more than 2,000 patients is currently admitted to a Gorakhpur hospital in Uttar Pradesh in Northern India.
The tragedy breaks the heart of parents of little children and it was indeed a â€˜tragedy beyond imaginationâ€™ according to one of the doctors attending to the children, BBC reported. Every single day, children die. “It is unbelievable tragedy. There are 5 to 10 children dying every day,” stated Dr KP Kushwaha, head of the pediatrics department at BRD Medical College.
Going back to 1978, about 6,000 children have already died of encephalitis since its outbreak in the year 1978. The most number of deaths was reported in July, one doctor stated. The dreaded disease often hits during the monsoon season in Gorakhpur, which borders Nepal.
Patients who are greatly affected by the tragedy are coming from the poor districts of the area. Until the year 2005, the tragic outbreak was brought about by Japanese encephalitis which is a virus rooting from mosquitoes. Today and in the past 6 years, the people are suffering from a different type of viral encephalitis, of which the cause is not yet determined till this day. Researchers say that one possibility of the outbreak is a water borne virus that is present in dirty, contaminated water.
Symptoms of encephalitis includes vomiting, seizures, head ache, heart and kidney inflammation. Â It can also lead to brain dysfunction and even bring a patient to a state of comma.