Nagpur: Just as number of patients suffering from Swine Flu and Dengue is on the rise in India hitting alarming numbers of casualties in Maharashtra, comes the alarming news from Medical researchers that the mosquito causing it, is going international. With a vengeance!
Leading American newspaper New York Times reports that:
Most medical reports, in Pro-MED, have concerned the United States, where, for example, Aedes aegypti — the yellow fever mosquito, which also spreads Zika, dengue and chikungunya — has been turning up in counties in California and Nevada where it had never, or only rarely, been seen.
Other reports have noted mosquito species found for the first time on certain South Pacific islands, or in parts of Europe where harsh winters previously kept them at bay.”
Being found in Nepal too
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases. Sher Bahadur Pun, a researcher, notes that over the past few days, vector-borne diseases have been observed in Kathmandu. (Another cold place which was considered safe earlier). Scrub typhus, dengue and chikungunya cases are on the rise.
More than 4 chikungunya cases have been detected among suspected cases. Likewise, at least half a dozen dengue viruses have been detected so far in Kathmandu. _Aedes agypti_ and _A. albopictus_ serve as vectors for both dengue and chikungunya, and these vectors are well established in Kathmandu; thus, there is a need for a high level of vigilance from the concerned bodies of the Nepal government.
So far, at least 140 cases of scrub typhus have been confirmed by laboratory testing in Kathmandu, prompting fresh questions about potential sources of infection and how it is spreading rapidly in Kathmandu, which deserve further research. Other diseases such as murine typhus and West Nile virus infection are also potential threats to Kathmandu, since these emerging diseases have already been reported in Kathmandu in the past.
We have to be much more vigilant in India
The point that should concern us is that a mosquito that is growing so potent and is able to transcend earlier barriers like cold weather, how much damage can it inflict in Indian conditions which are anyway favourable to it?
Not just state governments and civic Corporations, even citizens will have to be alert about not letting this dreaded mosquito breed in our compound or our neighborhood.
Please remember it can breed in very little water – even the damp floor of your bathroom.