The cases of people suffering from heat stroke touched 124 this month, the maximum recorded in the past one week, with several regions in Maharashtra recording temperatures beyond 40 degrees Celsius. At least one person, a Jalgaon farmer aged 52, allegedly succumbed to heat stroke, becoming the first victim of heatwave in the state.
The maximum cases this month have been reported from Chandrapur where 50 people were treated for hyperthermia, followed by Pune where 21 people suffered from high body temperature, data from Maharashtra Emergency Ambulance Service (MEMS) showed. Nagpur recorded 15 such cases and Ahmednagar 10.
District health officials said the cases of hyperthermia, a condition in which body temperature rises due to sudden spike in heat and the body absorbs more heat than it dissipates, are estimated to rise throughout April. The continued heat wave in parts of the state is due to strong easterly winds.
“Usually, we do not see heat waves in Mumbai. This time, even the city is witnessing an unusual trend. We have given guidelines for heatstroke management to all district health officials. High risk pockets are in the Vidarbha region, in Akola and Nagpur belt,” said Dr Pradeep Awate, state epidemiologist.
Across Maharashtra, data from the public health department showed that two people from Jalgaon and Latur were hospitalised. Both are stable. “Two days ago, a 60-year-old woman in Latur collapsed from heatstroke. She remains
in hospital,” a health official from Directorate of Health Services said.
On March 26, a Jalgaon-based 52-year-old farmer died of suspected heatstroke after he visited his field for work. The deceased, identified as Vasudev Shravan Patil, collapsed on Monday afternoon and was rushed to Parola’s Kutir government hospital.
According to district officials, he suffered from severe dehydration under high temperatures and was declared dead
in hospital. Patil is survived by his wife and two children. Awate added that the inquiry into his death is under way to assess whether he died due to hyperthermia.
Officials from MEMS said that on an average 8-10 people are being treated by the 108 ambulance services for hyperthermia every day. “Most cases are being tackled in the ambulance itself. We provide the patients with cool shelter and administer oral rehydration therapy,” said Dnyaneshwar Shelke, chief operating officer at MEMS BVG India Pvt Ltd.
In Mumbai, at least four patients were handled by the ambulance this month. All patients were reported from CST
railway station where they suffered from high body temperature and complained
According to a Mumbai district official, two heatstroke patients were treated on March 5, one on March 14 and one on March 15. “None of them required hospitalisation. They suffered from rapid breathing and giddiness. We allow body temperature to reduce and some rest before discharging them,” the official said.
Heatwave condition was observed in and around areas of Mumbai on March 26, according to the India Meteorological Department. IMD recorded maximum temperature of 38.7 degree Celsius in Santacruz, 5.9 degree above normal temperature. The IMD also declared heatwave in Konkan region earlier this week.
In Chandrapur, where the state recorded the highest number of heatstroke cases this month, most were reported in the last one week. “After March 20, the cases have significantly increased, specially in Ahmednagar, Chandrapur, Nagpur and Pune. Critical patients are being referred to nearest hospitals,” Shelke added.
According to general physician Dr Shahid Barmare, a simple precaution is being given to all patients to avoid afternoon sun and increase intake of fluids.