Dhaka, Bangladesh
‘Women, children more vulnerable to dengue’

‘Women, children more vulnerable to dengue’

Women and children are more vulnerable to death due to mosquito-borne viral disease dengue this year though rate of the fever has been counted higher among the men. Health experts said gender inequality, malnutrition, lack of awareness, menstruation and pregnancy are the factors those made women more vulnerable while less immunity and lack of fluid are the causes for children to die due to this pathogenic. According to Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) data, so far among the total dengue affected patients, 59 per cent are male and 41 per cent women. "Though numbers of male patients are higher, more women have died compare to their male counterpart this year," IEDCR director Professor Dr Meerjady Sabrina Flora told BSS recently. "We are getting more male patient compare to women. Women dengue patients are typically start treatment in late. May be this is one of the reasons behind witnessing more women casualty deaths among women," she said. Professor Flora said women are usually vulnerable as they got less percentage of hemoglobin than men, "Pregnant women are also more exposed to dengue," she added. As per the IEDCR death review committee so far 60 patients have died due to dengue fever this year where 24 are children, 40 per cent of the total death. Health and Hope Hospital Director preventive medicine specialist Dr AH Chowdhury Lenin said children are more vulnerable as they get shock syndrome in case of high fluid loss. "Children do usually not take that much liquid before detection of dengue …. in many occasions we do receive them with dengue fever in dehydrated state," he said, adding numbers of children have failed to survive this year in fight against Dengue due to lack of adequate fluid in their body. This year, the IEDCR said most dengue patients are in the age from 5 to 35 years. "This is the active group …. the percentage of dengue patients aged between 5 and 35 years is 70," Prof Flora said, adding "this group go to either schools or offices, so It is assumed that they being affected mostly in their educational institutes or workplaces." she said. Due to dengue, Bangladesh has witnessed 25 death in August, 5 in June, 28 in July and 2 in April, said IEDCR findings. Among the death, IEDCR found 37 percent are students, 5 percent business person, 13 percent homemakers and 37 percent service holders. Currently, the dengue situation is improving gradually as around 96 percent of dengue patients who were admitted to different hospitals across the country have already returned home after recovery. According to Public Health Emergency Operation Centre and its Control Room's, from the beginning of this year the number of dengue patients stood at 77,983 till Thursday whereas of them, 74,714 returned home from hospitals.

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