Second case of polio virus in Karachi in two months


KARACHI: In yet another alarming development, a child in Karachi’s Gadap Town has fallen victim to the poliovirus, bringing the total number of polio cases in Pakistan this year to five.

A 31-month-old boy tested positive for Wild Poliovirus 1 in UC-4 Gujro, Gadap Town in District East Karachi. This is the second case in Karachi during the current year, said an official from Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) Sindh.

This latest case emerged from the same area in Gadap Town where the previous polio case in Karachi was reported just last month.

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The official from EOC Sindh revealed that the child had received three doses of Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) through routine immunization, two shots of intravenous polio vaccine (IPV), and more than seven doses of OPV on separate occasions, as per the initial investigation.

While genetic sequencing of the isolated virus is underway, the official highlighted the absence of any travel history for the child. An intensive investigation has been initiated to understand the circumstances leading to the resurgence of the poliovirus in Karachi.

Recent reports indicated the detection of Type-1 Wild Poliovirus (WPV1) in nine environmental samples collected in October. Four of these samples were from Karachi, two from Chaman, and one each from Peshawar, Kohat, and Nowshera.

With the new case, the total number of polio cases in Pakistan for 2023 has risen to five, while the positive environmental (sewage) samples have reached a total of 64, according to officials.

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