Karachi witnessing mysterious dengue-like viral fever, say experts

Karachi witnessing mysterious dengue-like viral fever, say experts

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KARACHI: There’s a mysterious viral fever going around in Karachi which resembles dengue fever, but isn’t dengue as tests are combing back negative, according to clinicians and pathologists.

Like dengue, this viral fever reduces platelets and white blood cells in the patients.

“For a couple of weeks, we are seeing cases of a viral fever, in which platelets and white blood cells are dropping while other clinical symptoms are also similar to the dengue fever. But when NS1 antigen of these patients is performed, their tests come out to be negative,” Dow University of Health Sciences head of molecular pathology Prof Saeed Khan was quoted as saying.

Other experts, including physicians and hemato-pathologists from different hospitals of the city, too, confirmed that a dengue-like virus pathogen is circulating in Karachi, causing a disease which is acting similar to dengue fever and requires the same treatment protocols but is not dengue fever.

Because of the high prevalence of dengue fever and the mysterious virus, hospitals and blood banks across Karachi are facing an acute shortage of mega units and random units of platelets, clinicians said, advising people to take precautionary measures to prevent themselves from vector-borne diseases like dengue fever and malaria.

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