Nepal | May 28, 2020

Kala-azar claims four lives in eight months

Himalayan News Service
Share Now:

Kathmandu, August 5

Four persons have died of visceral leishmaniasis or kala-azar in the last eight months, according to Epidemiology and Disease Control Division. It said a total of 127 people had tested positive for the disease during the period.

The four persons who died from the disease were from Kathmandu, Palpa, Jumla and Bajura.

“We chose 12 districts initially to launch a pilot project for elimination of the disease. However, we had set out to undertake the task without necessary research. As kala-azar cases are increasing we have dropped the project and are instead focusing on diagnosis to reduce deaths from the disease,” said Dr Bibek Kumar Lal, director at EDCD.

According to WHO, for the elimination of disease, there should be less than one case in 10,000 people. However, 21 cases been diagnosed in Province 1, 23 cases in Province 2, seven in Province 3, two cases in Province 4, 28 cases in Province 5, 24 cases in Province 6 and 22 cases in Province 7.

“It is unlikely for us to achieve the target of eliminating the disease within this year. So we have instead shifted our focus on detecting the cases first,” added Dr Lal. EDCD said kala-azar cases were detected in 39 districts, which include hilly areas.

Dr Anup Bastola, spokesperson for Sukraraj Tropical Infectious Disease Hospital, said, kala-azar is a vector-borne disease caused by protozoan parasite Leishmania donovani and transmitted by the sandfly, Phlebotomus argentipes.

“The disease is characterised by prolonged fever, splenomegaly, anemia, and progressive weight loss and sometimes darkening of the skin. In the endemic areas, children and young adults are its principal victims. The disease can be fatal if not treated on time,” Dr Bastola said.

Enlarged lymph nodes are frequent in Sudanese VL patients Hyper-pigmentation, which probably led to the name kala-azar (black fever in Hindi), has only been described in VL patients from the Indian subcontinent.

As the disease advances, splenomegaly can increase, causing abdominal distension and pain, which is sometimes increased by concomitant hepatomegaly.

A version of this article appears in print on August 06, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.

Follow The Himalayan Times on Twitter and Facebook

Recommended Stories:

More from The Himalayan Times:

US President Donald Trump, Twitter account

Twitter fact-checks Trump tweet for the first time

SAN FRANCISCO: Twitter on Tuesday for the first time prompted readers to check the facts in tweets sent by US President Donald Trump, warning that his claims about mail-in ballots were false and had been debunked by fact checkers. The move marked a dramatic shift for the social network, Trump Read More...

Darchula Nepali stranded

Indecision prevails on managing migrants mulling return to Nepal

KATHMANDU, MAY 26 The government is yet to take any concrete decision on how to manage quarantine and health facilities, accommodation and visa process for those preparing to return to the country from abroad, including those from major labour destinations. Government officials have made frequ Read More...

More PCR tests necessary for accurate diagnosis

Kathmandu, May 26 A woman, who tested positive for coronavirus infection and was undergoing treatment at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, tested negative twice in the rapid diagnostic test. However, she tested positive for the infection in the polymerase chain reaction test in the National Read More...

Home quarantined pregnant woman dies in Saptari

Rajbiraj, May 26 A pregnant woman staying in home quarantine at Simara Chowk of Kanchanrup Municipality, Saptari, died today. Saptari District Hospital said that the woman aged 24 had died at home at around 7:00am today. “The deceased woman’s throat swab sample was collected and sent to BP Read More...

Deuba renews demand for relief package to journos and media houses

Kathmandu, May 26 Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba has once again called on the government to announce relief package for journalists and media houses. Issuing a statement on the occasion of the 29th anniversary of Nepal Press Union today, Deuba expressed concern about scores of jo Read More...

Quarantine facility poses risk of virus spread

Bajura, May 26 Quarantine facility at Malika Higher Secondary School in Bajura headquarters, Martadi, is at high risk of COVDI-19. A total of 93 people, who recently returned from India have been kept in the quarantine facility. They came from red-zone in India. But, they have not undergone Read More...

Bring gender-responsive budget: HoR panel

Kathmandu, May 26 The Women and Social Development Committee of the House of Representatives has directed the federal and provincial governments to bring gender-responsible budget for the fiscal 2020-21 in the wake of adverse situation created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Chairperson of the parli Read More...

Govt projects 2.3 per cent economic growth for this fiscal

Per capita income to increase to Rs 126,018 Despite joblessness absolute poverty to decline KATHMANDU, MAY 26 Halt in economic activities as a result of the lockdown that the government has imposed to control the spread of the COVID-19 contagion was expected to hit the country's econom Read More...