The Battle against Nipah Virus: The Essential Role of Medical Equipment & Supplies

Nipah Virus infection supplies

Owing to their frequent outbreaks, viral infections have been taking the healthcare setups by storm over the past centuries. Every time a new viral entity is detected, physicians and scientists from all over the globe direct their focus on treating the active cases, containing the further spread, as well as developing novel treatments. Based on their epicenters, the respective healthcare setups need to be well-equipped with the necessary medical equipment as well as supplies that are necessary to tackle these infectious diseases. One such infection is caused by the Nipah virus which manifests a high mortality rate. Let us understand what the Nipah virus is and which medical supplies are required for its detection and treatment.

Statistics being recorded regarding the active cases during an infection outbreak
Statistics being recorded regarding the active cases during an infection outbreak

What is the Nipah Virus?

Nipah virus (NiV) is a pathogenic entity that causes inflammation of the brain thus resulting in mild to moderate encephalitis. Apart from its potential to cause severe infections, the virus can also prove to be fatal in some cases.

Being zoonotic, the virus gets transmitted between animals and humans. Among animals, fruit bats or flying foxes as well as pigs serve as a reservoir for the virus.

Therefore, having direct contact with the infected animals or their body fluids can transmit the virus. In addition, the virus also has a human-to-human transmission. Outbreak of the disease is centered in Bangladesh and India along with some other parts of Asia.

Signs & Symptoms of Nipah Virus Infection

Once the virus has entered the body, it takes 4 to 14 days for the infection to start. After this initial incubation period, symptoms of the disease start appearing.

However, the severity of these symptoms varies from patient to patient, some of the common ones are present in almost all patients which include the following:

– Headache

– Cough

– Sore throat

– Fever

– Vomiting

– Breathing difficulties

– Disorientation

– Drowsiness or confusion

– Seizures

– Coma

– Inflammation of the brain

According to the statistics given by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), among the patients infected with the Nipah virus, a significant chunk i.e. 40 to 75% die due to the complications associated with the disease.

In some cases, the infection remains dormant or latent for months, even years, only to become active in later stages of life and cause severe disease, even death.

Diagnosis & Detection of Nipah Virus Using Advanced Laboratory Testing

Like all the other infectious diseases, early detection and early treatment can reduce the overall damage to the patient’s health. The type of testing that gives away the presence of Nipah virus includes the following:

Real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) reagents and kit:

Advanced lab tests for Nipah virus detection include real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

To conduct this test, a sample is taken from the back of the patient’s throat or nasal cavity with the help of a swab provided in the PCR kit.

In addition, blood, urine, respiratory secretions, or cerebrospinal fluid can also be collected as samples. Tests are run on these samples to detect the presence of RNA of NiV.

Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) diagnostic kit:

ELISA is conducted after the patient has visible symptoms or has already recovered from the disease. It works by detecting the presence of antibodies in the blood using an ELISA testing kit.

The sample is taken from the nasal cavity using a swab
The sample is taken from the nasal cavity using a swab

Both of these tests can be conducted easily as the kits are accessible to everyone. Considering their portability, diagnostic tests can be conducted in even smaller medical units thus eliminating the need to visit a healthcare facility.

Treatment & Management

In the absence of a licensed therapy for Nipah virus infection, the only options available are the employment of supportive therapy.

The patients should be advised to rest and hydrate well. An immunotherapeutic agent called ‘monoclonal antibody m102.4’ is in clinical trials and seems to have potential at this point. However, if the patient is severe, the following steps should be taken:

Intensive Care Equipment:

In the case of a patient who needs hospitalization due to a Nipah virus infection, issues associated with the respiratory system are commonly reported.

Keeping this in mind, healthcare facilities should have necessary instruments such as oxygen cylinders and ventilators in association with display monitors. Moreover, non-rebreathing masks attached with aspiratory and expiratory tubes are also to be used.

Safety & Isolation Supplies:

As the virus spreads from human to human contact, it is important to isolate individuals who have an active infection using isolation chambers. The use of a mask is mandatory in case human interaction becomes necessary. Moreover, oximeters should be provided to such individuals along with the B.P. apparatus so that health-related parameters can be recorded on a daily basis.

Prevention & Control

The spread of Nipah virus infection, like any other infectious disease, can be contained by adopting certain measures.

Adopting practices such as frequently washing hands, avoiding going to active disease zones, and limiting contact with infected animals and humans significantly decreases the infection incidence.

The following measures, along with the necessary equipment needed, should also be focused:

Surveillance Equipment:

Surveillance of humans as well as animals in areas where the virus is active helps identify cases at an earlier stage. The temperature of individuals should be taken using a hand-held infrared thermometer. Moreover, BATS tracking devices should be employed to keep an eye on the infected animals.

Public Health Supplies:

The use of public health supplies including face masks and hand sanitizers is essential to stop the spread of the Nipah virus. Disinfectant solutions should be employed at healthcare facilities as well as homes for the purpose of deeply cleaning the surfaces and making them virus-free. Above all, educating people about the preventive measures helps contain the spread.

Essential medical supplies needed to deal with NiV infection cases
Essential medical supplies needed to deal with NiV infection cases

All of the above-mentioned diagnostic kits, along with other medical supplies, can be purchased from Health Supply 770 at the most affordable prices. Furthermore, the prices are even lower during the weekly deals they offer on certain items. Do check them out for stocking up on some essential supplies. 

Conclusion

Nipah virus is an infectious disease that has to potential to cause fatalities. An early diagnosis catches the disease at its initial stages which eases the therapeutic process.

In places where infection is active, there is a need for healthcare facilities to be stocked up with necessary medical supplies such as thermometers, masks, sanitizers, and laboratory testing kits.

After all, being well-prepared in case of a disease shortens the time between hospital arrival and initiation of medical care.

Therefore, suppliers like Health Supply 770 should be contacted immediately for the purchase of necessary supplies.

uzma e1714761913269

PhD Scholar (Pharmaceutics), MPhil (Pharmaceutics), Pharm D, B. Sc.

Uzma Zafar is a dedicated and highly motivated pharmaceutical professional currently pursuing her PhD in Pharmaceutics at the Punjab University College of Pharmacy, University of the Punjab. With a comprehensive academic and research background, Uzma has consistently excelled in her studies, securing first division throughout her educational journey.

Uzma’s passion for the pharmaceutical field is evident from her active engagement during her Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D) program, where she not only mastered industrial techniques and clinical case studies but also delved into marketing strategies and management skills.

Throughout her career, Uzma has actively contributed to the pharmaceutical sciences, with specific research on suspension formulation and Hepatitis C risk factors and side effects. Additionally, Uzma has lent her expertise to review and fact-check articles for the Health Supply 770 blog, ensuring the accuracy and reliability of the information presented.

As she continues her PhD, expected to complete in 2025, Uzma is eager to contribute further to the field by combining her deep knowledge of pharmaceutics with real-world applications to meet global professional standards and challenges.