Health DG: 11-year-old boy died from heatstroke, toddler from dehydration

PETALING JAYA: Heatstroke has been identified as the cause of death of one of the two recent fatalities involving children in Kelantan.

Health director-general Datuk Dr Muhammad Radzi Abu Hassan (pic) said in a statement on Friday (April 28) that early investigations identified heatstroke with severe dehydration as the cause of death of the 11-year-old boy in Bachok. The boy had died on April 25.

In another case involving a 19-month-old girl in Kota Baru, the cause of death was identified as severe dehydration with underlying sepsis, and not heatstroke.

ALSO READ: Toddler dies from heat stroke in Kelantan

Dr Muhammad Radzi said as of Friday (April 28), five cases of heat-related illness have been reported.

"Three of the cases were reported in Sarawak, comprising two heat spasm cases and one heat exhaustion case.

"Two more cases were reported in Kelantan, one heat exhaustion case and another a heatstroke case, which led to death," he said in a statement.

Dr Muhammad Radzi said prolonged exposure to heat and lack of water intake can be a health hazard, especially for high-risk groups such as children, senior citizens and those with chronic diseases.

“The symptoms of heat-induced illnesses include headache, fatigue, inability to concentrate, dizziness, muscle weakness or spasm and nausea,” he said, adding that in serious cases, a person may also suffer from delirium, dehydration, unconsciousness and being comatose.

He said as of April 27, districts such as Kubang Pasu, Kota Setar, Pendang, Raub, Mukah and Nabawan have been placed on Level 1 alert list where the maximum daily temperature has been hovering between 35 and 37 degrees celsius.

ALSO READ: 11-year-old dies from heat stroke in Kelantan

However, there were no districts placed under the level 2 or heatwave alert list.

Dr Muhammad Radzi also advised the public to observe precautionary measures, especially in view of the festive season.

The public have been advised to keep themselves hydrated; reduce the intake of caffeinated, sweet and carbonated drinks as these are not good for hydration; have frequent showers; reduce exposure to the heat; use a fan or air-conditioner and seek immediate medical attention if there are symptoms.

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