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Tomato Flu scare: Centre is on alert, issues health advisory to states as cases are increasing rapidly. Deets here

After Kerala, cases of tomato flu have also been reported in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Orissa. So Centre put states on alert and issues health advisory as cases are increasing rapidly.

By Ruchi Upadhyay 
Updated Date

New Delhi: After Kerala, cases of tomato flu have also been reported in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Orissa. According to the information, so far 82 people have fallen prey to it, in which children have also become victims of tomato flu. Experts say that body stiffness, joint pain, fever, vomiting, skin irritation are common symptoms for the victims of tomato flu. In view of its increasing cases, the central government has also issued guidelines.

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According to the Centre’s advisory on Tuesday, “The disease, which seems to be a variant of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD), occurs mainly in children under 10 years of age, but it can occur in adults too.”

According to Lancet Respiratory Journal, the first case of ‘tomato fever’ was reported in Kerala’s Kollam on 6 May. The current infected case count has surged over 100 young children below 9 years of age in India from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Haryana and Odisha.

Usually, there are red blisters on the body that occur in children, which later grow and appear in the shape of a tomato, hence this flu is called tomato flu. Hand foot, mouth disease is very common in young children, that is why it is being said about tomato flu that a small child is becoming more and more victims of it. Although this type of disease occurs in children less than 10 years of age, but it is being said about tomato flu that it can also happen in people above that age. Whose immunity is weak.

Sanitization is the best defense for this. If someone gets this disease, then first of all he should be put in isolation for 5 to 7 days. Along with this, the patient should take complete rest and should take a lot of fluid along with it. Sponging on the skin with warm water reduces the irritation in the skin, so it is more important for such patients who have had this disease to sponge on the body with lukewarm water.

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Experts say that children should be encouraged to use handkerchiefs as much as possible. Do not scratch any part of the body on which the blisters are lying. Wash children’s clothes thoroughly. In the meantime, give nutritious diet to children. He told that by taking a sample from the throat and sending it to the laboratory, it can be checked whether the patient has tomato flu or not.

“The virus is not at all related to SARS-CoV-2, monkeypox, dengue and/or chikungunya. In fact, recent reports have suggested it to be Coxsackie A 17 that belongs to the group of enteroviruses. The disease will best be described as a clinical variant of the viral hand, foot, and mouth disease, a common infectious disease targeting mostly young children aged 1–10 years and immune compromised adults, and sometimes exposed immune competent adults. Tomato flu is a self-limiting illness and no specific drug exists to treat it,” the government said.

Key Takeaways from the advisory:
-Centre has urged people to follow proper hygiene
-Sanitization of the surrounding to prevent the infection from spreading among children through sharing toys, clothes, food, or other items with other non-infected children.
-Isolation should be followed for 5–7 days from onset of any symptom to prevent the spread of infection to other children or adults.

Here are some of the key details:
-In May, Tomato Flu was first identified in the Kollam district of Kerala
-Till 26 July more than 82 children younger than 5 years with the infection have been reported by the local government hospitals.
-Other affected areas of Kerala are Anchal, Aryankavu, and Neduvathur.

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