Tamil Nadu health department officials are on high alert after a five-fold increase in Conjunctivitis was reported in Chennai over the last week.
Dr M. Manoj Nair, Ophthalmologist, while speaking to IANS, said that there is a marked increase in conjunctivitis or Madras Eye cases in Chennai. He said that clusters are formed in schools, residential colonies, and flat complexes.
Conjunctivitis has a red eye condition with itching sensation and a gritty feeling. Discharges are also there from the eyes once conjunctivitis is diagnosed.
Regional Ophthalmologic Institute, Egmore is seeing around 50 out-patients a day instead of 10 patients a day in the first week of November.
Dr Manoj Nair said that the private hospital where he is working has also recorded 10 to 15 cases a day. He said: "Almost all Ophthalmologic clinics and eye hospitals in the city are seeing an increase in conjunctivitis cases."
He said that the eyes appear red due to inflammation in the Conjunctiva and small blood vessels in the conjunctiva cause the white of the eye to turn red.
While people with secondary infections are given antibiotics, in most cases doctors want patients to be isolated and to take adequate rest. Dr Manoj Nair told IANS that the disease is highly infectious and the only way to prevent its spread is to isolate those who get infected. He said that the disease will not affect vision.
Infected children are directed not to go to schools and office-going people should take off from work.
(With inputs from IANS)