HYDERABAD - The Chairperson of the Department of Pediatrics and health education committee Professor Dr. Salma Shaikh informed that the Rota virus diarrhea was not well understood in the old period probably because its symptoms are not primarily diarrheas, but rather systemic and non-specific.
Talking to this scribe here on Tuesday Dr.Salma said that there is no doubt that lack of clean drinking water and unsanitary conditions for the production and preparation of food represent the main reasons for the ongoing endemically of Diarrhea in the developing world.
She said that traditionally the age range considered at greatest risk is 5-10 years of age, although young children and infants may also be infected. In these the disease may present as a non-specific febrile illness until diagnostic tests are positive.
Madam Salma said about the treatment recommended that treatment of Rota virus begin on the basis of clinical findings prior to definitive diagnosis. Sadly in endemic regions, facilities for definitive diagnosis, based on blood or bone marrow culture or serologic tests may be entirely lacking.
She said that although most parents are not as familiar with the name of rotavirus as they are with other viruses, like the cold or the flu. Rotavirus is a very common cause of infections in children. In fact, it is the most common cause of severe diarrhea in children and is often responsible for outbreaks of diarrhea in daycares, added.
She said that the children usually develop symptoms of rotavirus infections about 1 to 3 days after being exposed to someone else who is sick with a rotavirus infection (the incubation period) and these symptoms include vomiting, watery diarrhea (without blood or mucus), fever, and abdominal pain but unfortunately, there is no specific cure or treatment for the actual rotavirus infection.
She said that instead, treatments are targeted at preventing and treating dehydration and Rotavirus infections also lead to the death of over 600,000 children in the world each year.
She said that in urban areas safe drinking water should be made available though piped systems or trucked tankers. Appropriate food handling is essential, washing hands with soap before preparing and handling food, eating only cooked or still hot food, avoiding raw food, shellfish ice. Appropriate systems for human waste disposal must be available for the entire community, she added.
Professor Dr. Salma Shaikh said that the victims of poor medical care are those who have to rely on government hospitals, which are overcrowded, short staffed and have meager funds to provide for medicines and health supplies.
She said that lack of attention to water, sanitation and hygiene issues is the result of backwardness and poor drinking water quality, insanitation and unhygienic conditions cause illness.
She said that however, the diseases could be prevented with precautionary measures and advised people to use water after extracting it from deep as subsoil water was mostly contaminated. Besides, boiled water should be used for drinking and hygiene should be maintained in food and lifestyles.
She said that the number of the patients, suffering from viral and bacterial diseases, like diarrhea, Rota Virus, malaria, typhoid, dengue fever has been on the rise.
She advised the people that if Rota virus diarrhea or cramping continues after 5 to 7 days, to contact their doctor and the doctor may also suggest other medications or treatments. She said that with the proper treatment, the fatality rate should stay below 1 percent and two vaccines are available against cholera but considering the brief and incomplete immunity they provide, the vaccines are not licensed in most countries, she added.