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Japanese encephalitis kills five children in Dak Lak

Update: June, 02/2015 - 17:10
The number of children being admitted with Japanese encephalitis is rising in Dak Lak General Hospital. — Photo

DAK LAK (VNS) — Japanese encephalitis (JE) has claimed the lives of five children so far this year in the Central Highland province of Dak Lak, the provincial General Hospital said.

The hospital has received and treated 18 JE patients, it said.

In May alone, three children died of the infection.

Director of the hospital Hoang Ngoc Anh Tuan said JE is a serious infection of the brain, caused by a virus that could be spread by some types of mosquitoes.

JE is transmitted to humans through the bites of the infected culex mosquitoes.

Symptoms of Japanese encephalitis, commonly known as "brain inflammation", include high fever, nausea and, in severe cases, seizures, paralysis and coma.

Children between two and eight years old are particularly vulnerable, Tuan said.

He said JE mainly occurs between May and July.

There is no cure for the disease. Treatment focuses on relieving severe clinical signs and helping the patient to beat the infection.

Safe and effective vaccines are available to prevent JE.

With complications likely to arise from the infection, the provincial health department has urged parents to take children under five, who have spotting symptoms, to hospital.

It also called on parents to follow the vaccination schedule, which is now seen as the most efficient way to prevent children from contracting the disease.

Awareness activities have also been strengthened in wards and districts across the province. — VNS

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