Manipur has confirmed 35 cases of dengue by Wednesday. Among the affected are 20 males, 10 females and 5 children. The worst affected district is Imphal East at Chingmeirong area near Classic Grande with 22 affected cases.

This is the first major outbreak of Dengue in Manipur, according to state health department officials. The first case was detected in 2007 and later in 2017. The mosquito Aedes Agypti, which is black and has white stripes is the carrier of the virus and is only transmitted from the female Agypti, the virus is not contracted from person to person but from the affected person through the mosquito bite only.

The larvae incubate in clear water, and the post-monsoon season is conducive to laying eggs in clear water. The eggs can be found in used disposable glasses, flower pots, discarded tyres, clear puddles, air-coolers and even in a spoonful of water. The eggs can lay dormant for over a year and can incubate once it comes in contact with water.

State malaria officer, Dr Rehman Chishti, told Eastmojo that the situation is under control and there is no need to panic even if there is a confirmed outbreak. He said that the main reason for the maximum number of cases in Imphal East may be due to an affected person arriving in the state from outside. Classic Grande is located nearby, and there might have been a traveller who could have been affected with dengue. The spread might have started in that manner, he assumed.

He said that fogging and larvicidal measures are presently carried out in the said area. The situation is under control as the Agypti mosquito can only fly for 20/30 feet. The mosquito becomes active only during the daytime and is not nocturnal. The first time, a person can have symptoms of vomiting, headache, joint pain and is mostly non-fatal and even a 70 year old who is presently dengue positive is asymptomatic, he said, adding that getting Dengue again can be fatal.

There are still no deaths to date, and there is no specific treatment for a Dengue patient, the virus runs its course within a week to ten days. The first case in the Chigmeirong area was detected by a medical officer in charge of Kakching, Dr Surjit. He had seen symptoms in three persons near his residence at Imphal East and reported the matter to the state malaria officer, after taking the samples, the affected tested positive on October 18, and the preventive measures started from then.

Dr Chishti said that under the National Vector Borne Disease Control Program, samples are being collected from individuals suspected to have been affected by Dengue. The state vector disease control cell along with local clubs are spreading awareness about how to prevent the disease from spreading and taking individual care. “Fogging is done to break the infection chain, larvicidal measures are taken up, and district medical officers are going door-to-door in affected areas. There is no need to panic as the situation is under control,” he told EastMojo.

Dengue has been detected in Churachandpur, Chandel, Imphal West, Imphal East, Thoubal, Tamenglong and Kangpokpi districts. He clarified that the viral photos in social media of women and elderly persons, who are seen lying down in groups are not Dengue affected persons, and the photos are misleading the public.      

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