Kyasanur Forest Disease : Viral Infection
Two people have died due to Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD), a viral infection, in Karnataka.
- According to the health department, the first fatality due to monkey fever was reported in Shivamogga district on 8 January wherein an 18-year-old succumbed to the virus.
- The second fatality was reported at Manipal in Udupi district when a 79-year-old man died in a private hospital.
- Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD) also known as monkey fever, is a tick-borne viral haemorrhagic fever endemic to the southwestern part of India.
- KFD is caused by the Kyasanur Forest disease virus (KFDV), a member of the Flaviviridae virus family.
- Hard ticks (Haemaphysalis spinigera) serve as the reservoir for KFDV. Once infected, ticks remain carriers for life.
- Rodents, shrews, and monkeys become common hosts for KFDV after being bitten by an infected tick.
- Humans can contract KFD through tick bites or contact with infected animals.
- According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the disease was first identified in 1957 when it was isolated from a sick monkey from the Kyasanur Forest in Karnataka
- There is no specific treatment for KFD, but early hospitalization and supportive therapy is important.
- A vaccine exists for KFD and is used in endemic areas of India