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Tamil Nadu & Karnataka screening people on border as Tomato Flu breaks out in Kerala

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Tamil Nadu & Karnataka screening people on border as Tomato Flu breaks out in Kerala.(Photo for representation)

Tamil Nadu and Karnataka have stepped up vigil on their respective borders and started screening people after the breakout of the highly contagious Tomato Flu in neighbouring Kerala.

Tomato flu, which is a viral fever that causes red rashes, skin irritation and dehydration, has been detected in over 80 children, all under five years of age in Kerala’s Kollam. Cases have also been reported from Aryankavu, Anchal and Neduvathur in the southern state.

The flu, which gets its name because of the red blisters it causes has symptoms similar to Chikungunya.

The authorities in the adjoining Tamil Nadu district of Coimbatore are on high alert and are screening people coming in from Kerala.

Since the flu largely affects children, authorities are also screening anganwadi centres across the district.

Karnataka has also stepped up vigil, with health officials maintaining a record of OPD services.

Meanwhile, Kerala Health Minister Veena George, issued a statement saying care should be taken so that the disease doesn’t spread to other children. The disease is highly contagious and spreads by direct contact with saliva, mucus, excreta, and fluid from blisters.

George said there was no need to panic but awareness was needed to spot the disease at an early stage and avoid complications.

Apart from blisters, the flu can also cause tiredness, joint pain, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, coughing, sneezing, runny nose, high fever, and body ache.