Materia Medica Malaysiana

August 19, 2008

Chikungunya virus still a threat in Johor, Perak

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 10:58 am

NST: MUAR: The Chikungunya outbreak in Negri Sembilan and Malacca was finally declared over but in Perak and Johor it was still being monitored, Health Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai said yesterday.
He said up to last Saturday, 835 people in Johor were down with Chikungunya, and Muar and Ledang had 71 cases.
Liow said to date, there was no casualty caused by the virus and he advised the public not to panic.
“The disease can be eliminated in the country if the people adhere to a simple formula by keeping their houses and compounds clean,” he said after visiting the Tangkak hospital in Ledang on Sunday.
Liow said there was no clinical proof of coconut water as an alternative cure for Chikungunya.
He agreed, however, that coconut water had a cooling effect and could help reduce the high temperature in patients suffering from the virus. He said it was generally accepted that coconut water was a nutritious drink and a thirst quencher.
Liow said although there was no known vaccine against the virus which was spread by the Aedes mosquito, the doctors in government hospitals and clinics have prescribed Voltaren, Indocid and Ponstan to reduce the pain suffered by victims of the virus.
He was asked to comment on the advice of Chinese physicians to drink coconut water, water chestnut or herbal medicine for those afflicted with Chikungunya as reported in the New Sunday Times.
“Unless the Chinese physicians can substantiate the claim with scientific proof that coconut water can cure Chikungunya, the Health Ministry will not endorse the claim.”
Chikungunya is endemic in many countries such as India, Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, and sub-Saharan Africa.
The first Chikungunya outbreak in Malaysia was recorded in 1999.

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