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Tomato Flu: All about the rare viral disease affecting children in India; Know symptoms and treatment

Image Source: INDIA TV More than 80 cases of tomato flu or tomato fever have been reported in India

Tomato flu or tomato fever has been reported in India since May. The cases have been reported in Kerala and Odisha, prompting the border state to enforce strict vigilance. More than 80 cases of tomato flu have been diagnosed in India, according to a report. This has been a concern for the district and the health administration, more so as it affects children in the 1-9 age group. Now that there seems to be a growing concern about this ‘rare’ infection, let us know some key points about tomato flu or tomato fever so that you and your family, especially the younger members, stay safe.

What is tomato flu?

Tomato flu is a rare viral illness that causes red-colored rashes, skin irritation and dryness, and the disease gets its name from the blisters it causes, which resemble tomatoes. It is a form of hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD). So far, most reported cases of tomato flu or tomato fever have been in children aged 1-9 years. The disease is rare in adults, as they usually have an immune system strong enough to defend against the virus.

Symptoms of tomato flu

Tomato flu is characterized by the following symptoms.

— A fever

— Painful ulcers in the mouth

— Skin rash with blisters on hands, feet and buttocks

— Physical pain

— Joint swelling

— Fatigue

— Skin irritation

— Dehydration

— Stomach ache

— Diarrhea and nausea

— Vomit

Is tomato flu a form of COVID-19?

While some symptoms are similar to COVID-19, the tomato flu has nothing to do with COVID-19. These symptoms are usually seen with other types of viral infections as well.

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Read: Monkeypox Outbreak: Asymptomatic Infection May Be a Concern, Study Reveals

Treatment measures for tomato flu

The tomato flu or tomato fever is a self-limiting one and there are no specific medications for it. If someone is afflicted with this disease, they should be kept isolated as it spreads quickly from one person to another. Those found with the infection will be asked to remain in isolation for five to seven days. The treatment of tomato flu or tomato fever is similar to chikungunya or dengue in that the symptoms are similar. Patients are given plenty of fluids and a warm water sponge to help get rid of the rash.

How to prevent tomato flu?

Disinfection and a hygienic environment are a must to stop the spread of tomato flu or tomato fever. Infected children should be kept in isolation until symptoms have completely resolved and the sharing of food, toys, clothing and other items should be avoided. Infected children should not touch or scratch the blisters.

Read: Why does each Covid wave have a different impact on our bodies?

(with PTI inputs)

(Disclaimer: The tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Before embarking on any fitness regimen or medical advice, consult a physician.)

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