Profile of Mass Casualties of Animal Bite Cases Reported to a Tertiary Care Institution from April 2014 to March 2015 in North Kerala : India
Background: Animal bite is an emerging Public health problem causing injuries and even death. Increase incidences of dog bite have been reported from the Indian state of Kerala from last two years and there have been several instances of a single animal biting several victims at the same area. The preventive clinic of Calicut Medical College is a referral centre for the management of animal bite cases in North Kerala. Incidents of mass casualties are a source of panic and alarm among public. The present study analyses these incidents of mass casualties of animal bites studying the epidemiological profile of animals involved. Considering the paucity of studies in this area the information obtained from the present study may help in mapping risk areas and to take necessary control measures. Objectives: To find out the epidemiological and clinical profile of mass casualty due to animal bites reported to the institution. Methodology: Record based cross sectional study design. Review of the mass casualty register maintained at the Preventive Clinic. Details of animal bite cases treated in the clinic from 2014 April to 2015 March were collected. Sociodemographic characteristics, clinical profile and management details were analyzed. Results: A total of 7072 animal bite cases reported to the preventive clinic during the study period. Of this, there were 54 incidents of mass casualty involving 236 patients were registered to receive treatment in the clinic. Majority were males (53%). Adults (79.2%) were commonly effected than children (20.8%).Median age was found to be 36yrs . Exposure to dogs constituted 77.1% of cases, followed by fox (11.9%). All were category 3 wounds and were given anti rabies vaccine, anti rabies immunoglobulin and antibiotics. Conclusion: There were 54 incidents of animal bite mass causalities involving 236 people. Dogs were the commonest animal causing mass casualty. Control of stray dog population by animal birth control needed.