Japanese Encephalitis claims 2 more lives in Assam, death toll at 77
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Guwahati: Japanese Encephalitis (JE) claimed one more life in Assam in the past 24 hours, pushing the toll to 66, the National Health Mission (NHM), Assam said in a report.

The lone death was reported from the Sonitpur district of Assam, the report said.

On the other hand, four fresh cases of the vector-borne disease were reported on Tuesday, the NHM report added.

While Kamrup district recorded two new cases each, Kokrajhar and Tinsukia reported one case each respectively, the report stated.

The four new cases reported on Tuesday took this year’s JE tally in Assam to 355, it said.

Upper Assam districts, including Golaghat, Sivasagar, Dibrugarh, Tinsukia, Lakhimpur, Jorhat, Majuli, Cachar, and Hailakandi in southern Assam, central Assam districts of Nagaon, Hojai, Morigaon, and lower Assam districts of Barpeta, Nalbari, Baksa, Chirang and Udalguri have been affected the most by the disease.

JE is an infection of the brain caused by the JE virus and spreads mostly from pigs to humans through mosquito bites. High fever accompanied by severe headache, irritation, convulsion, and loss of consciousness are some of the symptoms of the disease. The rural areas, in particular, get affected a lot.

A significant rise in JE cases is noticed every year between June and August. Assam witnesses over 150 JE deaths on average every year. The state reported as many as 318 cases of JE in 2020, of which 51 lost their lives. In 2019, Assam reported a total of 642 cases with a death toll of 161.

There is no specific treatment for JE, but given the high fatality rate, patients require hospitalisation, supportive care, and treatment of symptoms by ensuring rest and administering fluids, pain relievers and medication to reduce fever.

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