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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 25 June 2024 1.04 AM IST

DMO issues rat fever alert amid heavy rains; Advises caution and preventive measures

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THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In the wake of heavy rains in the district, the district medical officer has advised people to be very cautious about rat fever. There is also a warning to avoid going into, playing in, bathing in or washing your hands, feet and face in stagnant rainwater. Contact with water contaminated with the excreta of rats, squirrels, cats, dogs, rabbits, cattle etc. and consumption of contaminated food and water can cause leptospirosis.

Flood victims, rescue workers, media personnel, people working in stagnant water and drains, animal handlers, construction workers, contract workers, sanitation workers and other vulnerable individuals must take doxycycline as prescribed by a doctor. Doxycycline is available free from all government health centers. Gloves and socks are recommended for those working in areas with a high risk of disease.

Dispose of food waste properly. Wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly in clean water. Use only food items that have been prepared under clean conditions. Use only boiled water for drinking. Vendors should ensure cold drink bottles and packets, drinking water bottles and other food packets are stored in a rodent-proof manner. Such packets and bottles should be opened and used after cleaning.

The main symptoms of leptospirosis are fever, headache, pain in the muscles of the legs, yellow-red eyes, decreased urine volume and dark urine. Yellow fever can be suspected if symptoms of jaundice are seen along with fever. If the disease is severe, it can be fatal.

Those who have worked in high-risk areas should seek immediate medical treatment if they develop a fever and inform their doctor about the places they have worked. Report the illness to the nearest health workers. The DMO emphasized that no self-medication should be taken and complete rest is necessary.

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TAGS: RAIN, RAT FEVER, CAUTION
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