India reported its first death due to H3N2 infection in Karnataka on Friday.
As per reports, an 82-year-old man from Hassan died due to the virus on March 1, an official of the state health department said.
According to the District Health Officer of Hassan, the deceased identified as Hire Gowda, was a diabetic and suffered from hypertension.
Another death was also reported from Haryana, Press Trust of India reported, citing sources.
"He suffered from fever, cough and sore throat and had symptoms of influenza-like illness. He was admitted to the HIMS on February 24," a health officer said.
The Karnataka government has released an advisory amid rising cases of influenza (flu) H3N2 virus in the country. In view of increasing cases of seasonal flu, the prevention and control activities needs to be strengthened, the state government said.
"Seasonal Flu being a contagious disease can spread from person to person through droplets from an affected person's cough or sneeze or through contact of droplets on hands and surfaces. This self-limiting infection lasts for about 5-7 days with minimal morbidity and mortality," the state government said.
According to the top health research agency, H3N2 causes more hospitalizations than other influenza subtypes.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) continuously monitors diseases caused by respiratory viruses through its network of Virus Research and Diagnostic Laboratories (VRDLs) across the country.
According to ICMR, 92% of hospitalized H3N2 patients had fever, 86% had cough, 27% had shortness of breath, 16% had wheezing. Additionally, ICMR surveillance found that 16% of such patients had pneumonia and 6% had seizures. While, 10% of Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARI) patients who have H3N2 needed oxygen and 7% required ICU care.