Tomato Fever Spreading Rapidly In India, Over 100 Cases Reported So Far

Tomato fever cases in India are rising. The government has issued an advisory for the prevention and management of tomato flu.

Chanchal Sengar
Written by: Chanchal SengarPublished at: Aug 24, 2022Updated at: Aug 24, 2022
Tomato Fever Spreading Rapidly In India, Over 100 Cases Reported So Far

As if covid-19 and monkeypox infections were not enough, India is now witnessing a tomato fever outbreak. This viral infection that causes red blisters on the body is affecting hundreds of people, majorly children. The first case of tomato fever in India was identified in May. Its cases have suddenly increased with over 80 children currently affected by it. The total cases of tomato fever in India have crossed 100 which is alarming. At present, three southern states namely Kerala, Odisha and Tamil Nadu are seeing tomato fever outbreak which mostly affects children aged before five.

There is not much information about tomato flu as of now but scientists around the world are trying to understand what is this virus. The only information that we have so far is that this infection causes blistering with red sores(hence given the name tomato fever) and is highly contagious. Any healthy person coming in contact with an infected person can catch this fever. This is why children are vulnerable to tomato fever as they can easily come in close contact with infected people and objects. 

A recent Lancet study has mentioned that tomato fever is in the endemic stage where it is omnipresent. It has observable cases but they are not life-threatening. In a nutshell, tomato flu is contagious but not fatal. It is important to take its prevention and management seriously to avert the risk of outbreaks.

Tomato Fever In India

Some experts believe that tomato fever could be a variant of hand, foot and mouth disease that occurs in young children and immunocompromised adults. Symptoms of tomato fever are similar to dengue and chikungunya which is why most people get confused between the diseases. Tomato fever is prevalent in tropical regions and no case has been reported in Northern parts of India so far. Considering the sudden surge in the cases, the central government has issued an advisory to prevent tomato fever which includes isolation of patients and maintaining hygiene and sanitation.

Symptoms of tomato flu

Apart from tomato-like red blisters, the other symptoms of tomato fever include fatigue, body ache, high fever, rashes, joint pain, vomiting and diarrhoea. These resemble monkeypox symptoms which may confuse people. If you witness skin rashes and blisters, immediately isolate yourself and get tested for tomato fever as well as monkeypox. Avoid coming in close contact with your near and dear ones especially children and ailing people as they are vulnerable to this infection.

Image credits- freepik