Gujarat woman dies of flu-like symptoms triggering H3N2 scare
An elderly woman passed away due to a flu-like disease in Gujarat’s Vadodara city triggering a H3N2 scare as officials suspected that she may have died due to the dangerous variant of the seasonal influenza virus.
According to officials, the 58-year-old woman was shifted to Sir Sayajirao General (SSG) Hospital on March 11 from a private medical facility where she passed away on March 13.
Resident Medical Officer (RMO), SSG Hospital, D K Helaya shot down any preliminary assumptions that the H3N2 virus might have caused the woman’s death, saying that they’ve sent the samples for testing and the exact cause of death will be ascertained by a review committee.
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The deceased woman was a resident of Fatehgunj area in Vadodara.
Gujarat Health Minister Rushikesh Patel revealed last week that three cases of seasonal influenza subtype H3N2 have been reported in the state so far this year. Patel said that a total of 80 cases of seasonal flu were reported in Gujarat till March 10, out of which 77 are influenza of H1N1 and three of H3N2 subtypes.
However, the minister said, that no deaths due to the H3N2 variant have been reported in the state so far this year.
According to official data, India has recorded at least three deaths associated with H3N2 this season.
Fearing the outbreak of another Covid-19 like pandemic, health officials have urged people to wear masks, practice hand hygiene and get a flu shot if they haven’t already. H3N2, is a subtype of the influenza A strain, responsible for one of the three respiratory pandemics in the past century.
The flu variant’s symptoms tend to be the same as other forms of influenza, including fever or feeling feverish, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea (more common in children than adults), among others.
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