Forty children die in Indian fever outbreak

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A deadly fever believed to be caused by a type of encephalitis has killed as many as 40 children in an impoverished region of eastern India, health experts said on Thursday. The children died during the past week in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district after experiencing high fevers followed by convulsions and unconsciousness, prompting the federal government to rush medical teams to the state.
“The disease that killed the children is encephalitis, but it is not clear what type of virus infected them,” physician B.B. Tandle of the National Institute of Virology told AFP after examining some of the patients. State Health Minister Ashwani Kumar Choubey said that experts were in the process of identifying the exact cause of the deaths.
“It is not officially confirmed whether it is encephalitis or another unknown disease,” he said.