Nipah virus (NiV) infection is a relatively new zoonosis (a disease which can be transmitted to humans from animals). The natural hosts of the virus are fruit bats. These bats have the citizens of Kerala on high alert with the deaths of three people due to the Nipah Virus. The nurse who was taking care of the infected patients also got affected and became the fourth victim of the virus. Upon realizing the problem, the health department decided it was better to cremate her virus in an electrical crematorium without letting her family attend to her deceased body in order to stop the virus from spreading further. Let’s understand how such menace could be caused by a virus.
Where Did The NiV Epidemic Occur First?
The virus gets its name from the place of its origin, Kampung Sungai Nipah, a place in Malaysia. The first outbreak of NiV ever to be recorded was in 1998 where the pigs were the intermediate hosts. Again, in Bangladesh in the year of 2004, the NiV became active when people who ate date palm sap which was partially eaten and contaminated by the fruit bats.
Nipah Virus Symptoms
Following are a few pointers or Nipah Virus symptoms which will help you get the right help if you get affected by the NiV:
- A Headache
- Loss of Consciousness
- Stomach Ache
If you show any of the Nipah Virus symptoms or a combination of these symptoms then you should get yourself some immediate medical attention.
Is There A Treatment For NiV?
According to WHO (World Health Organization), at the moment there aren’t any vaccines for humans or even animals. The primary treatment, they said, adding further, is to get the patient under intensive care. Since human-to-human transmission of this virus was observed in a hospital setting it is safe to say that the virus has contagious properties.
Takeaway – Nipah Virus (NiV)
It goes without saying that you should be very careful about what you eat and always ensure that the vegetables and fruits are well washed. You can never be too careful when it comes to life-threatening diseases and NiV classifies as one. Therefore, keep an eye on the Nipah Virus symptoms and take adequate precautions to be safe.
- Do not consume date palm sap as the chances of it being contaminated are very high. As, fruit bats are very likely to visit the date palm trees and lick the sap.
- Avoid eating fruits dropped on the floor.
- Don’t climb trees where bats may have left their saliva or secretions.
- The Virus is extremely contagious, therefore, never share food, bed or be very close to a sneezing or coughing NiV patient. Moreover, try to avoid, at all costs, to come in contact with the saliva of an infected person.