Mystery Illness Hospitalizes Over 400 People

At least 400 people have been hospitalized with a viral fever in an Indian city as a mystery illness that has killed more than 60 people in the space of a week continues to spread through the state of Uttar Pradesh.

According to a report from the Daily News and Analysis (DNA) in India, more than 400 people have been hospitalized with the illness in the last few days in Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh, with 40 of the patients children.

The major symptoms reported by the patients include congestion, colds and fevers, with the number of people hospitalized with a viral fever having increased by around 15 percent over the past week, according to

The local government has issued guidance saying that patients with viral infections should not be admitted into the hospital without first taking a COVID test, as the country continues to tackle the virus that has caused devastation worldwide.

Speaking to, Dr. S.K. Nanda, the director of Civil Hospital in the city, confirmed that the medical center has seen an increase in viral cases over the last week and said that cases of dengue fever have been confirmed.

The reports of an increase in hospitalizations came just two days after it was confirmed that at least 68 people had died, including more than 40 children, in six districts located in the eastern part of Uttar Pradesh in the last week due to the mystery fever.

The deaths prompted the area's chief minister, Yogi Adityanath, to order an increase in bed capacity in hospitals while he also asked the health department in the state to conduct a detailed investigation into the illness, which has been described as a "mystery fever" by local newspapers.

The patients have suffered from dehydration, nausea, joint pains and headaches, while some people have complained of rashes spreading across their arms and legs. None of the patients suspected to be infected by the virus have tested positive for COVID.

BBC News reported that physicians in the region have suggested that the illness may be dengue fever, which is a viral infection spread by mosquitoes that is common in India.

In the space of a week, the illness was reported in the districts of Agra, Mathura, Mainpuri, Etah, Kasganj and Firozabad, with doctors in the region reporting patients coming in with a decline in platelet counts, which can be a symptom of severe dengue.

Dr. Neeta Kulshrestha from Firozabad told the BBC that "the patients, especially children, in hospitals are dying very quickly," while Dr. Sangeeta Aneja, the principal and dean of the Autonomous State Medical Hospital in the region, told The Hindu that although some of the patients are testing positive for dengue fever, not all of them are.

In response to the mystery behind the cause of the illness, which was first detected on August 18, Adityanath said that an investigation will be carried out with teams formed to conduct a probe.

"Due to lack of awareness at the local level, the patients were taken to private hospitals and clinics," he told reporters earlier in the week.

"After learning about the fever, the health department and administration appraised authorities of the situation at the state level. Directions have been issued to ensure adequate manpower at medical colleges."

Illness in India
A patient receives treatment in the dengue ward of a government hospital in Allahabad on August 30, 2021. More than 400 people have been hospitalized with a viral fever in an Indian city, as a mystery illness continues to spread through the state of Uttar Pradesh that has killed more than 60 people in the space of a week. AFP via Getty Images/Sanjay Kanojia