All You Need to know about Nipah Virus

​  All You need to Know about Nipah Virus

Bats spread Nipah Virus


Some cases with Nipah Virus infection found in countries with news of fatalities. Some time ago same news were coming from Malaysia and from West Bengal. Now News currently coming from Kerala, There are lot of myths and misinformation among the general public. This creates loss of panic among people. Some health workers also lost life because of this serious illness and in general the atmosphere is filled with fear.

So, Let us see in details but in simple language about Nipah Virus today. We hope this information will be helpful to those curious minds who really are scratching their heads about what is this new comer Nipah Virus in our nation. This page is just for information purpose and it doesn’t aim to replace your physician’s advice. We know you have many queries regarding Nipah and we would like to answer most common FAQs about Nipah.

So here we are revealing “All you need to know about Nipah Virus.”
So What is a Nipah Virus?
  • Like its name implies it is a virus named Nipah.
  • It has single stranded RNA to its core as its genetic material.
  • It is from genus henipavirus.
  • Family paramyxoviridae.
  • Mainly found in bats, pigs and date palm sap.
  • It spreads from animal to human when human comes in contact with infected animal or drinks date palm sap “toddy”.

So How does Nipah Virus spreads?
  • From infected animal to animal
  • From infected animal to human : Either contact with animal or eating half eaten fruits by animal
  • From human to human : By close physical contact, Contact with infected person’s body fluids.
  • By drinking date palm sap “Toddy”

What are symptoms of Nipah Virus infection?
  • Can be asymptomatic.
  • Varies from mild to moderate.
  • Fever may or may not be with chills.
  • Headache.
  • Cough.
  • Difficulty in breathing.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Confusion.
  • Lethargy.
  • Irritability.
  • Convulsion.
  • Coma leading to death.

How Nipah Virus Infection is diagnosed?
  • RT PCR on throat swab, saliva, CSF, Urine, Blood.
  • Serological tests to detect Nipa Virus infection.
  • Immunohistochemistry on autopsy samples obviously after death to confirm infection.

What is treatment for Nipah Virus infection?
  • Currently no specific treatment available.
  • Supportive treatment depends on severity of illness.
  • Convulsions need anticonvulsants.
  • Raised intracranial pressure may need steroids and mannitol.
  • Severely comatose patient may need ventilation for respiratory support.
  • All suspected cases should be treated in isolation to prevent spread of infection.
  • All healthcare workers, doctors and nursing staff should use universal precaution and needed precaution to protect themselves.
  • The infected material from patient especially those infected with body fluids should be discarded with utmost care.

How much is mortality after the nipah Virus infection?

Even with treatment the mortality amongst symptomatic cases is nearly 75 percent.

Who have highest risk of getting Nipah Virus infection?
  • Those coming in contact with infected pigs.
  • Those coming in contact with infected bats.
  • Those eating half eaten fruits by bats.
  • Those drinking raw date palm sap.
  • Health care workers coming in contact with infected cases.
  • Those coming in contact with infected persons.

How to prevent Nipah Virus infection?
  • Minimize contact with pigs.
  • Minimize contact with bats.
  • Avoid going to abandoned wells and places.
  • Avoid eating half eaten fruits.
  • Avoid drinking “ Toddy “.
  • Avoid contact with infected persons.

Why Nipah Virus Infection is emerging?
  • ​Natural Habitat of bats being destroyed they are getting shifted ti cities.
  • Ever increasing cities leading to destruction of jungles lead to shift of bats to city limits.
  • Increased contact of human beings with bats.
  • Increased contact of human beings with pigs.
  • Consumption of unhygienic raw date palm sap "toddy" in countries like India.
  • Overcrowding of human population.
  • No proper sanitary practices among population for disposal of body fluids.

From where did the Nipah Virus came?
  • In 1998, Nipah Virus Infection was first detected in Malaysia causing very high mortality among cases in pigs and pig farmers.
  • Later it occurred in 2001 in Singapore.
  • ​In 2001 it was seen in Bangladesh and india.
  • It continued to appear in 2003, 04, and 05.
  • ​In 2018 cases of Nipah Virus infection occurred in Kerala India
  • Again now in 2019 Kerala has seen outbreak of Nipah Virus infection.

Is Nipah virus infevtion vaccine preventable?
  • Unfortunately currently no vaccine available.
  • That is why it is very dangerous.
  • Nipah can spread almost unchecked.

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