The last few days in July must have been the longest and most traumatic for Chetana Mahantesh’s family. They must have gone through 26 days of agony as their 21 year old daughter lay comatose after being diagnosed with rabies encephalitis. The girl succumbed to death on Tuesday night.

Comatose Chethana dies

Barely had she smiled after getting her BA result of 67%, Chetna a resident of Chitradurga, was taken to a private nursing home, Nimhans as she was put down because of fever and insomnia. The medical fraternity at the clinic prescribed her with anti-psychosis drugs. After taking the drugs she shocked everyone by slipping into a deep coma.

Rabies infection kills

On July 21st, Chethana was rushed to Nimhans and admitted to the ICU. Dr VL Satish, medical superintendent, Nimhans gave his expert comments on the case “Due to infection in the brain, her condition worsened gradually and this led to multi-organ failure. Her blood pressure and heart beat declined gradually over the past two days.”

Contrary to this the heart broken family had a different story to tell, they insisted that Chethana did not have Rabies, and her brother Nagaraj M emotionally stated, “The lab report hasn’t mentioned her suffering from rabies. Also, there were no behavioral changes to prove she was suffering from rabies. She died due to an overdose of sedatives. We’ll fight this case legally.”

The young girl had been treated by a doctor in Chitradurga and the reports state that she was over-drugged and after that she slipped into a coma. She was given medical treatment from July 9th-11th at Basaveshwara Medical College, then to Udupi’s Manipal hospital, then finally to Nimhans.

Was it a dog bite?

Could one ever imagine that a dog bite would turn so fatal? In the month of May, a dog on the loose had bitten five people and Chetna was one of them. The dog died and Chethana fell gravely sick! With time the young girl could not fight against the diseased upheaval taking place in her life. An inquiry has been ordered into the case and Health minister UT Khader assures that “We have to wait for that report as well as the post-mortem report.”

The preliminary post mortem report from Victoria Hospital confirms that rabies infection was the cause of Chetana’s death. The bereaved family has taken her body back to carry out the last rites in Hirebennur that is about 20km from Chitradurga town.

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