After making an appearance in Delhi, chikungunya has made inroads into the millennium city as well. There is a rapid increase in the number of cases of the mosquito-borne infection in the city of late. No official data was available on the number of cases but private hospitals have reported that they were handling over 50 cases daily.
Chikungunya is a viral illness caused by mosquito bite and its symptoms are somewhat similar to those of dengue, which include high-grade fever, severe joint pain, muscle pain, headache and joint swelling. There is no specific treatment for chikungunya.
Dr Manish Jain, director of Navjeevan Hospital, said it had struck Gurgaon like an epidemic. "Every day, we are witnessing several cases with the symptoms of chikungunya. Most cases are from sectors in old Gurgaon because of the waterlogging in those areas. Construction sites are majorly responsible for waterlogging and hence breeding of mosquitoes.”
Fortis Memorial Research Institute (FMRI) also reported rise in the number of cases. Chikungunya is a vector-borne disease, in which the virus is passed to the human through aedes aegypti or yellow fever mosquitoes. “A major difference between dengue and chikungunya is that patients experience severe pain in their joints, which makes it mandatory to prescribe painkillers. A large number of patients are coming in with high fever accompanied by severe body ache, especially severe joint pains. Some patients have also developed rashes over their body,” Dr Amitabh Parthi, additional director, internal medicine, FMRI said.
Talking about the precautions that need to be taken in the case of chikungunya, Dr Parthi said, that patients have to be treated on the basis of the symptoms. "Hydration should be of primary importance. One should increase water consumption by at least 1.5 litres over regular consumption as dehydration can aggravate the problem," Dr Parthi said.
When asked about the cleanliness drive by Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG) to prevent the spread of vector-borne diseases, an MCG official said, "Door-to-door surveillance is on. Every day more than 10 areas are being covered. We are regularly carrying out cleanliness and sanitation drives to keep a check on larvae growth. Besides, the awareness campaign by the authorities in schools helps in educating families."