Pune reports first case of Zika

Updated on Dec 02, 2022 11:06 PM IST

The patient is originally from Nashik and had travelled to Pune on November 6. Before that, he had travelled to Surat on October 22. The patient has fully recovered now, says official

A mosquito-borne human flavivirus, Zika can be transmitted via Aedes mosquitoes. (Representative pic)
A mosquito-borne human flavivirus, Zika can be transmitted via Aedes mosquitoes. (Representative pic)
ByNamrata Devikar

Just two days after the city reported its first case of Japanese Encephalitis (JE), there are reports of its first case of Zika wherein a 67-year-old man from Bavdhan has tested positive for the Zika virus.

Dr Pradeep Awate, state surveillance officer, said that the patient complained of fever, cough, joint pain and fatigue and sought medical help from a private hospital in Pune as an outpatient on November 13. “The patient tested positive on November 17. The test was performed at a private lab. The National Institute of Virology (NIV) confirmed that the patient was positive on November 30. The patient is originally from Nashik and had travelled to Pune on November 6. Before that, he had travelled to Surat on October 22. The patient has fully recovered now,” said Dr Awate.

Zika is a mosquito-borne human flavivirus. It can be transmitted via Aedes mosquitoes, which bite early mornings or even late evenings. The symptoms are generally mild and include fever, rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise or headache.

In August 2021, a 50-year-old woman from Pune’s Purandar tehsil had tested positive for both Zika and Chikungunya according to officials of the state public health department. However, the patient from Bavdhan is the first Zika patient reported from Pune. Across Maharashtra, the first case of Zika was reported from Palghar district wherein a seven-year-old tested positive for Zika virus in July this year.

Dr Samrat Shah, internal medicine expert, Apollo Spectra Pune, said that while the symptoms of Zika include fever, rash, conjunctivitis, muscle and joint pain, malaise or headache, some infected people can be asymptomatic. Moreover, the symptoms are present for at least a week.

“Protection against mosquito bites during the day and early evening is a key measure to prevent Zika virus infection. Special attention should be given to the prevention of mosquito bites amongst pregnant women, women of reproductive age, and young children. Aedes mosquitoes breed in small collections of water around homes, schools, and workplaces. It is important to eliminate these mosquito breeding sites by appropriate methods, including covering water storage containers, removing standing water in flower pots, and cleaning up trash and used tyres. Wear full-sleeved clothes and use mosquito repellents to prevent mosquito bites. Also, ensure that rooms are fitted with screens to prevent mosquitoes from entering,” said Dr Shah.

Two days ago, Pune had reported its first case of JE wherein a four-year-old boy from Wadgaon sheri tested positive for the infection. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), JE virus (JEV) is a flavivirus related to dengue, yellow fever and West Nile viruses, and is also spread by mosquitoes.

Speaking about the JE case in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) limits, Dr Sanjeev Wavare, assistant health chief, PMC health department, said that appropriate measures have been undertaken to check mosquito breeding in the region. “We are conducting a rapid fever survey in the region. Mosquito control measures such as removing/reducing water accumulation and spraying of insecticides have been undertaken in Bavdhan but no other breeding sites of Aedes mosquitoes have been found. We have continued spraying of insecticides to ensure that mosquito breeding is kept in check,” said Dr Wavare.

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