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The Tomato flu
Tomato flu is a self-limiting illness and no specific drug exists to treat it. The tomato flu was first identified in the Kollam district of Kerala on May 6, 2022, and as of July 26, 2022, more than 82 children younger than 5 years with the infection have been reported by the local government hospitals.
To date, apart from Kerala, Tamilnadu, and Odisha, no other regions in India have been affected by the virus.
The primary symptoms observed in children with tomato flu are similar to those of chikungunya, which include high fever, rashes, and intense pain in joints.7 Tomato flu gained its name on the basis of the eruption of red and painful blisters throughout the body that gradually enlarge to the size of a tomato.
Because tomato flu is similar to chikungunya and dengue as well as hand, foot, and mouth disease, treatment is also similar—ie, isolation, rest, plenty of fluids, and hot water sponge for the relief of irritation and rashes. Supportive therapy of paracetamol for fever and bodyache and other symptomatic treatments are required.
Similar to other types of influenza, tomato flu is very contagious. Hence, it is mandatory to follow careful isolation of confirmed or suspected cases and other precautionary steps to prevent the outbreak of the tomato flu virus from Kerala to other parts of India.
Drug repurposing and vaccination are the most efficacious and cost-effective approaches to ensure the safety of public health from viral infections, especially in children, older people, immunocompromised people, and those with underlying health issues. As yet, no antiviral drugs or vaccines are available for the treatment or prevention of tomato flu.
Vivek P Chavda,Kaushika Patel,Vasso Apostolopoulos, Tomato flu outbreak inIndia,Published:August 17, 2022 The Lancet Respiratory Medicine,DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/S2213-2600(22)00300-9
B.Sc Life Sciences, M.Sc Biotechnology, B.Ed
Isra Zaman is a Life Science graduate from Daulat Ram College, Delhi University, and a postgraduate in Biotechnology from Amity University. She has a flair for writing, and her roles at Medicaldialogues include that of a Sr. content writer and a medical correspondent. Her news pieces cover recent discoveries and updates from the health and medicine sector. She can be reached at email@example.com.