State sees drop in cases of H1N1 this season

Last Updated : 06 December 2015, 20:06 IST
Last Updated : 06 December 2015, 20:06 IST

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It is that time of the year when one would have expected high inpatient numbers at the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Chest Diseases (RGICD), due to H1N1 cases.

The October-November period would have reported not less than 100 cases a month. But this year has been an exception, with just 28 cases across the State in November. There have only been sporadic cases of the flu.

Dr Shashidhar Buggi, the RGICD director, sees incessant rainfall and the relatively humid conditions for the change in trend.

RGICD itself saw only five cases, with all patients being admitted to the intensive respiratory care unit (IRCU). Buggi said two of these patients who had pneumonia along with H1N1 died in November.

“This could be due to the seasonal variations. We have seen continuous rains over the last month. It is just now that the temperature has begun to drop. We must wait and watch,” Dr Shashidhar Buggi said.

A total of 111 patients were admitted to the IRCU, of which 20 were pneumonia cases.
Speaking to Deccan Herald, Dr H Paramesh, chairperson of the committee constituted by the State government to look into H1N1 cases, said one of the possible reasons for the drop in the numbers was that H1N1 had become like any other flu with sporadic cases being reported all through the year.

Possible immunity

“There is no particular season when it has peaked. A possible reason is that we have developed immunity to the flu over the years,” said Paramesh, adding that the virus might have also undergone mutation.

Officials in the department of health and family welfare said that following a meeting with the Health minister earlier this month, all precautionary measures were put in place to prevent an outbreak.

Instructions have been given to all hospitals in the State to be vigilant and look for symptoms of the flu in patients with fever.

Cases in 2015 highest for 6 yrs

So far, in 2015, the State has reported 3,550 cases of H1N1 and 91 deaths. These figures are the highest in the last six years.

Healing touch

 Just 28 cases in State in November
 Excess rain, humid conditions among reasons
 H1N1 may have become just another flu
 People may have developed immunity
 Virus likely to have undergone mutation
 All precautions in place at hospitals

Published 06 December 2015, 20:06 IST

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