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Rajasthan Swine Flu update: Virus claims first victim in Kota

Swine flu H1N1Swine flu claimed its first victim in Kota this year with the death of a 25-year-old man at a private hospital today, health officials said. Vinod Sen (25), teacher of a government school in Khatkad village in Bundi district, died of swine flu while undergoing treatment at a private hospital here, Chief Medical and Health Officer (CMHO) of Kota Dr R N Yadav said.

Mr Sen was admitted to the hospital on May 11 and tested positive for H1N1 virus on May 13, following which his treatment started, he said. Medical teams have been sent to Khatkad village following reports of his death and tamiflu tablets distributed in his neighbourhood and to family members, he said. Tamiflu is a medicine used to treat swine flu. The medical officers have been asked to keep a watch over patients suffering from cough and cold in their respective areas, Mr Yadav said, adding that people have also been asked to consult a doctor in case of persistent cold and cough. Two swine flu testing centres are working here, he said. Last year, total eight swine flu deaths were recorded while 33 patients were tested positive for the deadly H1N1 virus in Kota, Yadav said.

What is the swine flu virus?

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Swine flu is caused due to a zoonotic disease which originally was transmitted from pigs to humans and now spreads from one human to another. The symptoms of swine flu are very similar to regular influenza and include fever, headaches, chills, diarrhoea, coughing and sneezing. One can prevent infection by maintaining basic hygiene and wearing a proper surgical mask during flu season. The number of cases shoots up during the summers and monsoon seasons. There are various vaccines available to combat the disease and antiviral treatments for prevention as well. One should however only use these medicines under a doctor's supervision as indiscriminate use might result in susceptibility to the virus.

Read: Why the swine flu situation in India is bad

Prevention

Swine flu isn't a disease that you can catch from pigs. It is in fact, a human virus that spreads from one human to another. The virus is extremely contagious. Here are some swine flu prevention tips:

  • It can spread through coughing and sneezing so always cover your face while doing so. And make sure people around you in office or home also follow this.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth too often
  • Maintain a high level of personal hygiene. Always wash your hands before or after eating and particularly after returning from a public place.
  • Sometimes virus can spread through droplets that have remained on surfaces of things like laptops, phones so avoid using someone else's items.
  • Avoid public places, unhygienic conditions, etc.
  • If your city/area is swine-flu endemic, always wear a standard swine flu mask in public places (the H-95 mask which is worn by nurses and doctors while collecting samples from swine flu victims). Normal surgical masks which sell like hot cakes during swine flu season might not give enough protection.
  • If you feel sick and look like you are developing a cold or fever, stay at home and take enough rest. Rest has also been shown to increase 'interferons' which help our immunity to fight the virus better. Keeping away from others also prevents spread of the infection.

Also read: Swine flu: All you need to know

Don't know the symptoms of swine flu? Check out our symptom search to know more about the H1N1 symptoms

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