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Tomato Flu: UAE docs weigh in on contagious virus affecting kids in India

A brand new and viral an infection which impacts younger kids has emerged in India, prompting well being authorities to subject a well being advisory as Tomato Flu instances handed 100 final week.

Al Arabiya English spoke to doctors in the United Arab Emirates to weigh in on how severe the virus is and who’s most in danger.

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“Tomato fever or tomato flu is a illness primarily endemic to Kerala, India. The outbreak was recognized in Kollam, Kerala, on Could 6, 2022. Nevertheless, latest experiences recommend that it has unfold to different states like Odisha and Tamil Nadu [in India],” stated Dr. Deepak Gandhi, Specialist Pediatrician at Dubai’s Medeor Hospital.

In a research revealed within the Lancet Respiratory Journal final week, docs stated that the flu was first recognized in India’s Kollam district of Kerala on Could 6 and that as of July 26, over 82 kids beneath the age of 5 had been contaminated with the Tomato Flu, based on native authorities hospital knowledge.

The endemic viral sickness then triggered an alert within the neighboring states of Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Following this, an extra 26 kids between the ages of 1 and 9 had been reported as having the illness in Odisha.

As of now, no different areas in India have been affected by the virus.

The Tomato Flu virus, which spreads through shut contact, will get its title from the spherical purple blisters that develop on the physique upon an infection.

“Its signs are fever, joint ache, and purple, tomato-like rashes often seen in kids beneath the age of 5 years. It is usually accompanied by different signs like diarrhea, dehydration, nausea and vomiting, and fatigue,” Dr. Anuradha Ajesh, Pediatrics Specialist at Bareen Worldwide Hospital in Abu Dhabi’s MBZ Metropolis stated.

Different signs embrace swelling of the joints, physique aches, and customary flu-like signs.

The virus primarily impacts preschool kids and infants, the docs stated, including that younger kids are most susceptible to the illness as it’s extremely contagious.

“The illness shouldn’t be thought of to be life-threatening,” stated Gandhi.

“There is no such thing as a particular medicine for treating the illness and it takes its course with time. Care is just like the protocol used for different related viral infections like chikungunya, dengue fever, and HFMD [hand, foot, and mouth disease], which incorporates paracetamol for aches and fever, relaxation, hydration, and sponge baths.”

Though scientists are nonetheless making an attempt to determine the basis reason behind the Tomato Flu virus, they had been capable of deduce that it was not associated to COVID-19 regardless of displaying related signs, an article revealed by British medical journal the Lancet stated.

Precautions that may be taken

The docs suggested that sustaining a distance from suspected instances and sustaining good hygiene to assist forestall an infection.

“If kids develop signs, they need to be remoted, and the issues they contact, together with bedding and clothes, have to be recurrently sanitized,” Gandhi stated.

“Keep correct hygiene, isolate contaminated kids not less than for 5 to seven days from the onset of sickness at house and keep away from sharing of toys [or] meals with non-infected kids.”

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