Nipah Virus (NiV) is a virus that is transmitted from animals to humans and can also be transmitted through contaminated food or directly between people.
The first time Nipah Virus was recognized was in 1999 during an outbreak among pig farmers. After which it kept on Spreading and in 2001 it was recognized in Bangladesh since then country have seen annual breakouts.
In Bangladesh and India, infection has been associated with close contact with bats and consumption of raw date palm sap, a source of food for the local bat populations.
The disease has put many regions in risk India, Ghana, Cambodia, Indonesia, Madagascar, the Philippines, and Thailand up till now.
Signs and symptons of Nipah Virus
Symptoms usually appear five to 14 days after exposure to the virus.
Illness with Nipah virus begins with fever and headache
inflammation of the brain (encephalitis).
drowsiness and disorientation characterized by mental confusion.
Sore throat and vomiting regularly.
Muscles Ache is another major symptom of Nipah Virus.
Treatment for Nipah Virus
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), supportive care is the only current treatment for this viral infection. There is no vaccine specifically available to protect humans. However, some researchers suggest that the antiviral drug ribavirin may be useful, but there is little or no data to support this. A human monoclonal antibody that targets the G glycoprotein of NiV has shown benefit in a ferret animal model of this disease, but researchers have not studied the effects of the antibody in humans.
Nipah virus infection can be diagnosed with clinical history during the acute and convalescent phase of the disease. The main tests used are real time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) from bodily fluids and antibody detection via enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).
Other tests used include polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay, and virus isolation by cell culture.
In the absence of a vaccine, the only way to reduce or prevent infection in people is by raising awareness of the risk factors and educating people about the measures they can take to reduce exposure to the Nipah virus.
Public health educational messages should focus on:
Reducing the risk of bat-to-human transmission.
Efforts to prevent transmission should first focus on decreasing bat access to date palm sap and other fresh food products. Keeping bats away from sap collection sites with protective coverings (such as bamboo sap skirts) may be helpful. Freshly collected date palm juice should be boiled, and fruits should be thoroughly washed and peeled before consumption. Fruits with sign of bat bites should be discarded.
Reducing the risk of animal-to-human transmission.
Gloves and other protective clothing should be worn while handling sick animals or their tissues, and during slaughtering and culling procedures. As much as possible, people should avoid being in contact with infected pigs. In endemic areas, when establishing new pig farms, considerations should be given to presence of fruit bats in the area and in general, pig feed and pig shed should be protected against bats when feasible.
Reducing the risk of human-to-human transmission.
Close unprotected physical contact with Nipah virus-infected people should be avoided. Regular hand washing should be carried out after caring for or visiting sick people.
Controlling infection in health-care settings
Health-care workers caring for patients with suspected or confirmed infection, or handling specimens from them, should implement standard infection control precautions at all times
Currently Nipah Virus has been Recognized in Kerala
Last year, in an outbreak in Kerala, Nipah virus had claimed 17 lives.
Now in 2019 Over 86 people, among them 22 students, are under surveillance in Kerala Hospital
Moreover, a 23 year old Student is admitted in a private hospital in Kerala’s Ernakulam, has tested positive for the deadly Nipah virus. Her several Test were done and sent to Pune. The test results have come from the National Institute of Virology, Pune, and it’s positive for Nipah.
The health authorities have made elaborate arrangements and Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has assured of full support to the Public of Kerala.
The Correspondent bureau