On September 24, a nine-year-old girl from Sangam Vihar became the first person to succumb to dengue this year. She died at AIIMS on the day she was admitted. Civic officials said they have stepped up surveillance in the area to prevent breeding of mosquitoes.
In September alone, the number of dengue cases have almost doubled this year’s tally. Official figures from Delhi’s three civic agencies put the total cases at 64 (till September 28). At the end of August, this figure was 34. As many as 18 cases were reported on Thursday and Friday.
Tabassum, the girl who died, reportedly had a very low platelet count when she was brought to AIIMS.
“Her platelet count was around 40,000, which fell progressively while tests were being conducted. The patient was bleeding through her nose and gums, and finally she went into shock, known as Dengue Shock Syndrome (DSS),” a senior doctor from the Medicine department said.
Tabassum’s cardiac function started deteriorating, and eventually she died of multiple organ failure.
Doctors at AIIMS said this was the first reported case of DSS this season. Civic officials said they have increased fumigation across the city, particularly in the Sangam Vihar-Badarpur stretch. “We have intensified surveillance in Sangam Vihar, where Tabassum lived, to see if there are any mosquito breeding spots. We expect breeding to increase till the onset of winter. Fumigation activities will be increased in all parts of the city,” Dr N K Yadav, municipal health officer of South corporation, said. “This season’s toll is still the lowest we have seen in a decade. It is also a much milder strain of dengue.”
Last year, 208 dengue cases were reported, against 3,084 in 2010.
Doctors at AIIMS said the strain was milder this season, and most patients did not even need to be admitted if the diagnosis was made in time.
“The platelet drop in dengue usually begins after a patient becomes afebrile (when the fever subsides). Like in the case of Tabassum, a lot of patients mistake dengue fever for a viral, and think they are cured after it subsides. It is important to check blood platelet counts and other tests after the fourth or fifth day of fever,” a senior specialist in medicine from AIIMS said.
Mistaken for viral
Tabassum died of multiple organ failure
She was taken to hospital after her fever subsided and platelet counts had fallen
Doctors said she died because her dengue fever was mistaken for a viral
A Platelet count of 40,000 is low but if the doctors had given her the right treatment it was not fatal. When the platelet count was going down what took doctors these doctors so long. The plasma should have been administered immediately. Rest of the tests could carry on. Do doctors mean that there is no way to save a patient when the platelet count has gone to 40000? Well, some doctor had to respect this life.