Manipur: Dengue outbreak worsens, 5 suspected victims succumb

Against 1,338 cases this year, there were only 203 cases of dengue reported in 2021 while in 2022, it increased to 503 cases

Representative image of Mosquito fogging (photo: IANS)
Representative image of Mosquito fogging (photo: IANS)


Manipur again faces adengue outbreak with 1,338 cases and five suspected dengue related deaths officially registered so far this year, officials said on Saturday quoting the status report released by the state Health Directorate.

Against 1,338 cases this year, there were only 203 cases of dengue reported in 2021 while in 2022, it increased to 503 cases.

State Malaria Officer of the National Vector-Borne Disease Control Programme, Dr S. Priyokumar said that Imphal West district was classified as the worst-hit district with 898 cases, including three suspected deaths and in Tamenglong along with the two newly-formed districts of Pherzawl and Jiribam yet to report any dengue case so far.

According to the status report, Imphal East district reported 241 dengue cases followed by Thoubal with 79, Tengnoupal 15, Channel 4, Senapati 28, Kangpokpi 8, Noney 5, Kakching 13, Ukhrul and Kamjong one each.

The dengue outbreak comes at a time when the mountainous state is struggling to get back to normalcy from the unprecedented ethnic strife that flared up on May 3 and has ravaged the lives of hundreds and displaced over 60,000 people who are being sheltered in make-shift relief camps, occupying schools, colleges, community halls and government buildings.

"Dengue mosquitoes lay eggs in clean water stored in containers inside homes such as bottles, flower vases, tyres etc,” said Priyokumar who encouraged all to wear long sleeves and pants during the day as these mosquitoes are active at daytime.

With over 60,000 people, including 22,000 children and 300 senior citizens, currently sheltered in 351 relief camps since early May, the prospect of fighting the dengue outbreak seems daunting.

This is so because, other than a few, most camps face challenges of sanitation and water supply via water reservoirs, increasing the potential of becoming ideal breeding grounds.

Compounding the problem is the issue of people living together in cramped spaces, which increases vulnerability to mass infection.

According to the doctors, on the brighter side most DENV (mosquitoes affected by the dengue virus) cases are asymptomatic, producing only mild illness, with only a very few developing into severe cases.

Medical practitioners say early detection and access to timely, proper medical care is key to lowering fatality rates of severe dengue.

The state malaria officer said that the government has taken up several preventive measures like fogging, source reduction drive and supply of impregnated bed-nets at different locations across the state to kill mosquito eggs and several awareness and media campaigns.

Dr Lokeshwar Singh, the Superintendent of the state-run Jawaharlal Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS) also said that there has been a surge in dengue cases in Manipur and he revealed that those who are undergoing treatment for the viral infections have complications and low platelet count.

Strife-torn and tribal dominated Churachandpur district witnessed a surge of cases with the district hospital reporting 26 probable cumulative positive cases on Friday. Cases of dengue are higher in thickly populated areas.

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