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An unknown disease in India may be related to heavy metals or pesticides

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Photos taken on December 8, 2018 show the sixth batch of doctors of the Chinese medical aid team to Malawi test local residents for malaria during a free consultation at the Kadidi Village Health Center in Brandair City, southern Malawi.

An unexplained disease has been reported in the city of Eluru in Andhra Pradesh in southern India since the 5th. At least 555 people have been sent to hospital for treatment. The local government has urgently sent medical experts to Eluru to investigate the pathogen. The preliminary test report showed that the cause of the disease may be related to the heavy metals nickel and lead.

According to “Deutsche Welle” reported on the 9th, a man has died from the disease. He has symptoms of epilepsy, nausea and chronic pain. In addition, more than 300 children have also suffered from the disease, most of whom have symptoms of dizziness, fainting, headache and vomiting. Their new coronavirus test results were all negative.

A senior doctor in a public hospital, AS. Ram, told AFP that some people think this is a mass hysteria, but it is not the case. He also said that most of the people who came to the hospital suddenly fainted due to epileptic seizures, with minor head injuries or blue eyes, but they were fine after one or two hours.

The report quoted the director of the Eluru Government Hospital, Mohan (AV. Mohan) as saying that the investigation showed that the blood samples of ten patients contained high levels of nickel and lead. However, the current sample size is too small to be determined.

Whether the disease is caused by heavy metals. At present, the local area has begun to investigate the source and diffusion of these heavy metals. There are no large-scale factories in the area, and local water and milk sources have been tested before.

Experts from Indian national medical institutions have also tested local edible oil, rice and urine samples.

According to reports, local officials believe that the disease may be related to chemical additives in pesticides. Narasimha Rao, the Indian Federal Assemblyman from Andhra Pradesh, said that after communicating with government health experts, he believes that the most likely cause of the disease is the toxic organochlorine pesticide ingredients. 

This insecticide is thought to increase the risk of cancer and is banned in many countries. According to reports, exposure to this pesticide may cause convulsions, headaches, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, muscle weakness and sweating.

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