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Saturday, 17 November 2012

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Mysterious allergic reaction may have originated from insect - MRI Director

Medical Research Institute (MRI) Director Dr Anil Samaranayaka yesterday said they suspect the mysterious allergic reaction on schoolchildren in Central Province as having originated from an insect.

Dr Samaranayaka said he sent MRI entomology teams to affected schools in Gampola and Kandy as part of investigations to determine the cause of allergic attacks. MRI entomologist R Ranasinghe will lead the investigations.

"Entomology teams have collected environmental samples from the affected schools, "he said.

Over 1,500 students have been brought to the Gampola Base and Balangoda Hospitals for treatment from Jinaraja Girls School and Panvilathenna School in Gampola and Weligapola Walagamba Vidyalaya in Balangoda after they showed allergic reactions.

Dr Samaranayaka said they are carrying out investigations with the Health Ministry's Epidemiological Unit since the discovery of the first allergic reaction was from Gampola Jinaraja Girls School last Monday.

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena has called for an immediate investigation following reports of the allergic attacks on students. The latest attack was reported yesterday from the Nugawela boys' school in Kandy where around 200 students had reportedly suffered allergic reactions and were admitted to the Thiththapajjala Hospital. Meanwhile, Gampola Base Hospital Director Dr Sarath Weerabandara said they treated every student who came to the hospital with allergic reactions. We treated around 1,000 students. "They went home after successful treatment. The last 15 patients were sent home yesterday (16)," he said.

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