Mysterious fever in Siliguri finally identified

Siliguri has been the hub of 'feverish' activity since last month when a fever of an unknown origin was reported in some inhabitants. The cause of the killer fever that has claimed more than 39 people till now, has finally been identified as 'Mutating Measles Virus' by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). The Health Minister of West Bengal stated that the virus could not be arrested by the normal measles vaccine, and suggested that the usual precautions against communicable diseases be taken to avoid it.

The disease that had created panic in this small township of West Bengal last month, started with high fever, convulsions, breathing difficulty and headache; and the person became delirious within 3-4 days. This was earlier provisionally diagnosed as Japanese encephalitis, but since the symptoms were inconclusive, this diagnosis was questioned. The Department of Health had sent medical teams from the National Institute of Communicable Diseases, Delhi and the National Institute of Virology, Pune, to collect samples from infected patients in Siliguri.