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What links sudden deaths of 5 young expats in two months?

Latest case of suspected flu death in the uae sends shock waves

Dubai, By Suchitra Bajpai Chaudhary
Senior Reporter .

Is their any deadly infection in the air? The sudden death of a young Indian man C.N Nabban Nasser in Ajman on December 29 was the latest fatality in the last two months, sending shock waves in the expatriate community .Circumstances surrounding the sudden deaths indicate some similarities between the victims , a gulf news investigation has found.

They all had respiratory infection their conditions quickly worsened leading to multiple organ failure and died suddenly.

On December 19, a two and a half year old girl Mia Susan Markouse died of encephalitis and influenza A at the zulekha hospital Sharjah. On November 28 seven year old Saiba Fatima dies at the NMC Specialty Hospital Dubai. Hours after being brought to the emergency .She had been suffering from mild to high fever ,nausea and vomiting for three days for which she was treated at the local clinic determined test revealed her blood platelet count had fallen 7000 which should be above 70000 and she died of sepsis and multiple organ failure .

On November 13 Alia Niyas Ali ,A grade 12 student died of suspected the symptoms with in house after reporting to the emergency of Rashid Hospital she was under treatment for mild grade fever and respiratory infections but was not responding to her GP’s protocol and died of fluid collection around her heart and intestine.

On October 30, Ameenah Annan Sharaf a nine year old grade 3 student was the first to die after suffering from flu like symptoms more than a week she went to her local clinic and was eventually admitted to the Al jalila Children’s Specialty Hospital where she died of heart failure .

Kerala Connection

At five came from the state of Kerala in India and at least four came from Kannur district .None had any history of illness and led healthy lives before contracting fever in less than a week before their death .At least three had visited their home town Kannur in July for summer holidays.

Similar symptoms

Besides bring from Kerala all had a mild to high fever with respiratory infection .in case of Alia ,Ameenah and shiba they had all consulted their local GP.

Nasser ,who was a fitness freak, had an intermittent fever for a few months for which he took paracetamol and its subsequently subsided according to his cousin, Rameez.

Naseer worked for Thumway clinic, Sharjah, but he first reported to the clinic only on December 28 and was immediately referred to the hospital where he died after a few hours.

Most of the patients were fully conscious when brought to the hospital with Alia, Nasser and Shiba walking to the hospital .All of them suffered multiple organ failure.

Dr Sheikh Altaf Basha specialist in internal medicine, who attended Nasser at the Thumway Hospital told Gulf news “The patient has developed pneumonia and a pleura around his lungs was infected. He was going into renal, liver and heart failure. When he was admitted to the hospital .A blood test revealed his white blood cells (WBC) count to the 190000 when it should have been less than 10000. He probably had underlying leukemia which could not be accertained definitively and this could have led to him contracting infections.

Sudden death

Nasser died just 4 hours after being admitted. His cousin Rameez who was looking after him told Gulf News “ I am finding it difficult to believe this as he walked to the hospital himself at about 8 pm. He complained of chest pain .He was weak and only after reaching there he collapsed ,His heart stopped working at 1 am .They tried to resuscitate him but he died at 3 am on Saturday Morning

His parents OK Nasser and CN Najma were unable to travel for his funeral which was held at Al Quoz cemetery on Saturday afternoon.