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June 13, 2019

Dengue claims city’s third victim of the year


June 13, 2019

Dengue haemorrhagic fever has claimed one more life in Karachi, as a 55-year-old woman, a resident of the city’s Landhi area, died due to complications of mosquito-borne viral infection at a private hospital, health officials said on Wednesday.

“A lady of 55 years of age, who was identified as Bachae Zahar Khanzada, died at the Aga Khan University Hospital on Tuesday due to dengue shock syndrome,” Abdul Basit, an official of the Sindh Dengue Prevention and Control Programme, told The News on Wednesday.

The dengue programme official said the deceased was a resident of Old Muzaffarabad Colony in Landhi, who had been taken to the private health facility on June 9 on complaints of high-grade fever and shock, adding that she died on June 11 due to multi-organ failure because of dengue shock syndrome.

This is the third death due to dengue fever in Karachi in the current year, officials said, adding that all three who died due to the mosquito-borne illness were women.

“Baby girl Muskan Abdullah, eight years of age and a resident of MPR Colony, was the first victim of the dengue fever, who died in January, while a 61-year-old lady from the Pipri area of Bin Qasim died last month due to the dengue fever,” Basit said, adding that 618 people have tested positive for dengue fever in Karachi so far this year.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection causing a severe flu-like illness and sometimes causing a potentially lethal complication called severe dengue.

The incidence of dengue has increased 30-fold over the last 50 years. Up to 50-100 million infections are now estimated to occur annually in over 100 endemic countries, putting almost half of the world’s population at risk.

Severe dengue (previously known as dengue haemorrhagic fever) was first recognised in the 1950s during dengue epidemics in the Philippines and Thailand. Today it affects Asian and Latin American countries and has become a leading cause of hospitalisation and death among children and adults in these regions.

Caused by the Aedes aegypti, a type of mosquito which is the main vector that transmits the viruses that cause dengue, the viruses are passed on to humans through the bites of an infective female Aedes mosquito, which mainly acquires the virus while feeding on the blood of an infected person.

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