Amid monkeypox scare, hand-foot-mouth cases on the rise in Pune: docs

Published on Jul 28, 2022 10:43 PM IST

City doctors are reporting an increase in patient inflow related to measles; hand, foot and mouth diseases

City doctors are reporting an increase in patient inflow related to measles; hand, foot and mouth diseases (REPRESENTATIVE IMAGE)
City doctors are reporting an increase in patient inflow related to measles; hand, foot and mouth diseases (REPRESENTATIVE IMAGE)
ByNamrata Devikar

City doctors are reporting an increase in patient inflow related to measles; hand, foot and mouth diseases. Many patients are seeking medical help for these seasonal infections amid monkeypox fear.

Diseases like chickenpox, measles and hand, foot and mouth have symptoms of rashes on skin along with blisters. Doctors note that though these symptoms can be confused by patients, these infections are common in rainy season.

Officials of Maharashtra health department that issued monkeypox alert said that of the 10 samples of suspected patients sent to Pune-based National Institute of Virology (NIV), eight have tested negative.

Dr Pradeep Awate, state surveillance officer, said, “The result of two samples is awaited. As families of suspected patients are facing stigma, their details will not be shared,” said Dr Awate.

Speaking about patients coming with complaints of rashes, Dr Lalit Rawal, paediatrician at Ruby Hall Clinic, said there are many cases of hand, foot and mouth diseases.

“Many patients are confused over the cause of these rashes. It is different in nature limited to hand, foot and mouth region, common during this season. Diagnosis can be done at the local level to provide relief to patients,” said Dr Rawal.

Dr Dhananjay Kelkar, medical director, Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital, said patients are regularly visiting for measles and hand, foot and mouth diseases.

“No patient has come to us fearing monkeypox. The symptoms of monkeypox, chicken pox and other diseases are different in nature. There is no need for patients to panic. Monkeypox is spread through bodily fluids and India has reported only four cases,” said Dr Kelkar.

Dr Pratibha Walde, internal medicine, Manipal Hospitals, Kharadi, said, “We have people who come with similar symptoms of rashes and fever, but these are not typical to those found on palm and feet during monkeypox. These rashes are caused typically due to other viruses that trigger these symptoms. It is mostly the dengue or routine virus fever caused during this season where rashes are not so common. Fevers are more common in patients.”

So far, four cases of monkeypox are reported in India. Three cases were from Kerala with a travel history to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) whereas one case is from Delhi with no foreign travel.

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