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Posted at: Jan 13, 2018, 12:49 AM; last updated: Jan 13, 2018, 12:49 AM (IST)

Two test positive for hepatitis E at IGMC

Tribune News Service

Shimla, January 12

With two patients testing positive for hepatitis E at Indira Gandhi Medical College and hospital (IGMC), the jaundice outbreak is showing signs of revival in the city after a period of eight months.

Out of 13 cases tested for hepatitis E at the IGMC since January 1, two cases tested positive for the water-born virus, revealed the doctors.

Learning lessons from the 2016 jaundice outbreak that had killed 22 patients out of over 1,600 who had suffered from the disease, the state Health Department has upped its surveillance. “We are trying to know the whereabouts the two patients who tested positive for Hepatitis E a few days ago at the IGMC”, said Dr Sonam Negi, state Surveillance Officer.

But gastroentologists warn that the jaundice outbreak needs to be nipped in the bud by plugging the possible leakage of sewage into the water supply lines and water sources. “Residents need safe drinking water. The hepatitis E and A viruses can be identified at the National Institute of Virology at Puna as there is no testing facility in Himachal Pradesh”, they add.

The hepatitis A or E is caused by contamination of drinking water sources. When a patient drinks the contaminated water he catches the viral infection, observed Dr Brij Sharma , Head, Department of Gastroenology, IGMC.

Dr Sharma said it was through boiling of water that the virus was killed. “The patients who get jaundice, they should drink boiled water, take healthy and regular meals and should never approach a quack for a remedy as there is no such thing, one needs to go to a specialist”, Dr Brij cautioned.

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