Cases of mosquito-borne diseases surged in the last 72 hours with the city reporting 13 new dengue and three chikungunya cases. The total number of confirmed dengue cases is now at 70 and chikungunya at 23. No deaths associated with these diseases have been reported so far in the city.
The latest cases were reported from Wazirabad, DLF Phase 4 & 5, sectors 10, 15 and 51.
A total of 21 cases of dengue and 22 cases of chikungunya were confirmed between September 1 and 20. Blood samples of 65 more patients suspected to have contracted the diseases are being tested at the Civil Hospital. They displayed symptoms such as high fever, body rashes, low platelet count and appetite loss.
Of the 65 suspected blood samples, six positive tests have been sent for further diagnostic tests, officials said.
Fourteen cases of dengue and 4 cases of chikungunya have been confirmed in those living outside the city.
An Elisa test is widely used by lab technicians for confirming both dengue and chikungunya as it has a faster detection rate. The test though has lesser accuracy than other diagnostic tests.
The RT PCR test and rapid antigen test, which are considered more accurate, are costlier and time consuming. These are currently being used to get more clarity in certain cases -- for example, six cases have tested positive for both chikungunya and dengue.
The health department has put a Rs 600 price cap on all diagnostic tests for chikungunya and dengue.
Seeing the surge in cases, private and government hospitals are adding extra beds in their wards. At Fortis Memorial Research Institute and Medanta-The Medicity, hospital authorities have made additional arrangements in the emergency ward to accommodate patients with severe conditions.
However, Gurgaon civil hospital, which is getting more than 300 such patients, is not equipped to take the extra load and some patients are being referred to Safdarjung Hospital in New Delhi.
The Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG) and the health department are carrying out preventive measures extensively such as fumigation using hand-held fogging machines, introducing gambusia fish that feed on dengue larvae in stagnant water and using eucalyptus oil, which kills the virus, in water bodies.
“We have initiated all cautionary measures and are spraying chemicals within a 500m radius of areas with confirmed cases of vector-borne diseases to stop it from spreading,” Dr Asruddin, chief medical officer, MCG, said.
Last year, the city had reported a three-year high in dengue cases with the district health department registering 459 cases. As many as 375 cases were reported in 2012, 175 in 2013, and 86 in 2014.
Prevention better than cure
Both dengue and chikungunya have the same symptoms, which include high fever, body rash, low platelet count and headache.
Chikungunya also causes severe joint and muscle pain.
Take rest to avoid exertion
If tested positive, consume lots of fluid to avoid dehydration
Use mosquito nets while sleeping
Apply mosquito repellent ointments
Wear long sleeves and trousers to avoid mosquito bite
Do not allow fresh water to accumulate in your surroundings as it breeds Aedes mosquitoes which transmit both dengue and chikungunya
Dengue- High if left untreated and not diagnosed at an early stage