Tropical febrile diseases and their diagnosis

December 18, 2017

 

In tropical countries like India, the febrile illnesses are very common which present with a common symptom of fever. The rapid diagnosis of the disease is important so that immediate treatment for the patient can be started to curb the disease. However, the most neglected part of diagnosing a febrile illness is the differential diagnosis ie. when a patient is shown with common symptoms like fever then it is important to check whether it is the manifestation of the other disease too or not presenting similar symptoms.

Tropical febrile diseases like Malaria, Typhoid, Chikungunya and Leptospirosis show common symptoms of fever. However, many times, the physician seems to ignore the possibility of any disease but malaria and starts with preliminary medications.

However, this has become the cause of concern for many reasons, few of which are listed below:

  1. Antibiotic resistance in organisms due to their indiscriminate use

  2. The real causative agent is missed in the misdiagnosis

  3. The co infections can be missed out, thus worsening the medical condition of the patient.

  4. The hospitalization and medical costs which can occur due to the misdiagnosis and thus the improper care of the disease.

There is no second opinion that the treatment of the patient should start immediately but it should not be on the basis of misdiagnosis which can affect the patient and the society adversely. It is thus very important to be sure of the disease first and then starts the course of treatment.

This is where Rapid Diagnostic tools (based on immunochromatographic assay principle) play a very important role. The RDTs, help to screen and diagnose the disease in not more than 15- 20 minutes time. Simple, easy to use and reliable, these tests can be used in any setup like in a clinic, hospital or a lab.

These tests can help in the differential diagnosis of the febrile illnesses at the same time. Within no time the physician can be sure of what course of treatment has to be given to the patient.

The Immucheck Malaria Rapid tests are coated with antigens which help to diagnose whether the patient is suffering from Plasmodium vivax or Plasmodium falciparum ( P.f.  is the more severe form- for which medication course is different).

The detecting antibodies can also help us to indicate whether the infection is past, recent or in the middle stage by use of these RDTs. The differentiation in IgG and IgM antibodies is one of the most important features of RDTs.

The co infections can also be sorted out by running two tests at the same. For eg. Malaria and typhoid are the two infections which can also occur as co infections. However, this can be confirmed and ruled out by running the respective tests at the same time.

The uncommon and neglected disease like Leptospirosis has shown its ugly face in the form of epidemics. However, the rapid diagnosis of the disease can help to curb and contain the disease from transmitting further.

The classical methods of detecting and diagnosing diseases are time consuming, labor intensive and require skilled personnel. However RDTs, can be performed with minimal experience and skills. The inventory and storage cost is low.

Thus, the Febrile illnesses deserve major attention in tropics so that the quality of diagnosis can be improved and there can be better disease management and patient care.

Immunoshop offers a wide range of rapid products for differentiating febrile illnesses. Contact us to know more.

 

 

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