Karachi Is Becoming Infected with a Dengue-Like Virus.
Dengue fever-like symptoms are fast spreading in Karachi, Pakistan, and the virus itself behaves like it, reducing white blood cells and platelets in the patients' bloodstreams.
Pathologists and haematologists in the provincial capital report that patients who are tested for dengue fever come back negative, despite the fact that the disease requires the same treatment regimens as dengue fever.
Since then, Dr. Saeed Khan, a molecular pathologist at the Dow University of Health Sciences, says that the mystery fever cases have been popping up across the province capital.
That's why NS1 antigen testing, the diagnostic test used to determine if the patient is infected with dengue virus, fails to detect the disease in this case, he said.
It has been suggested by Dr. Saeed that this virus might be a 'arbovirus,' a group of viruses that are spread by arthropod vectors such as mosquitoes and flies.
For this reason, he urged individuals to take preventative measures against illnesses like dengue fever and malaria, as blood banks around the city are already experiencing an acute scarcity.
All victims with this mystery illness are responding to the standard therapy of dengue fever, according to Dr. Zeeshan Hussain of a government-run health institution.
In spite of the fact that dengue fever has taken many lives, none of the patients with this strange illness have perished.
It's not the first time in Karachi that persons with dengue fever-like symptoms have tested negative for dengue virus, according to a haematologist and physician, Dr. Saqib Ansari.
Dr. Saqib recalled a similar event that occurred in 2008, when NS1 antigen testing showed false-negative findings. More investigation is needed since the probability of false-negative results cannot be ruled out this time around.