Viral Hemorrhagic Fever (VHF)


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Viral Hemorrhagic Fever (VHF) is a severe and potentially life-threatening condition caused by several viruses. While rare in India, it is crucial to be informed about VHF due to its potential for outbreaks and significant health risks. This article aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of VHF in the Indian context, including its signs and symptoms, definition, classification, causes, risk factors, types, diagnostic tests, treatments, complications, prevention techniques, and an explanation in simple, layman’s terms.

Signs and Symptoms of Viral Hemorrhagic Fever:

VHF presents with a range of symptoms, which may include:

  • High fever: Sudden onset of high body temperature.
  • Fatigue: Extreme tiredness and weakness.
  • Hemorrhagic manifestations: Bleeding from various sites such as the nose, gums, or gastrointestinal tract. Bruising and petechiae (small red or purple spots on the skin) may also occur.
  • Joint and muscle pain: Aches and discomfort in the joints and muscles.
  • Organ dysfunction: In severe cases, VHF can lead to organ failure, such as kidney or liver dysfunction.

What Is Viral Hemorrhagic Fever?

Viral Hemorrhagic Fever (VHF) refers to a group of illnesses caused by different families of viruses. These viruses can damage blood vessels, disrupt blood clotting mechanisms, and impair the body’s ability to regulate bleeding. VHF encompasses several diseases, including Ebola virus disease, Marburg virus disease, Lassa fever, and Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, among others.

Classification of Viral Hemorrhagic Fever:

Viral Hemorrhagic Fever is classified based on the family of viruses that cause the disease. Some notable examples include:

  • Filoviruses: This category includes Ebola virus and Marburg virus, which are known for causing severe outbreaks and high mortality rates.
  • Arenaviruses: Lassa fever, caused by the Lassa virus, belongs to this group and is endemic in certain regions of West Africa.
  • Bunyaviruses: Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is caused by this group of viruses, primarily transmitted through ticks or contact with infected animal blood.

Causes and Triggers of Viral Hemorrhagic Fever:

Viral Hemorrhagic Fever is primarily caused by contact with infected animals, particularly rodents and arthropods such as ticks and mosquitoes. Human-to-human transmission can occur through direct contact with bodily fluids or contaminated objects. Outbreaks are often associated with inadequate infection control measures, poor sanitation, and limited healthcare resources.

Risk Factors for Viral Hemorrhagic Fever:

Certain factors increase the risk of contracting VHF:

  • Exposure to infected animals: Working or living in environments where contact with infected animals is common, such as agricultural or rural settings.
  • Travel to endemic areas: Visiting regions known for VHF outbreaks without taking appropriate preventive measures.
  • Healthcare workers: Those caring for VHF patients without proper protective equipment and infection control measures are at higher risk.

Types of Viral Hemorrhagic Fever:

Viral Hemorrhagic Fever encompasses several types, each caused by specific viruses:

  • Ebola Virus Disease: Characterized by severe symptoms, high mortality rates, and outbreaks in sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Marburg Virus Disease: Similar to Ebola virus disease, Marburg virus is associated with outbreaks in Africa.
  • Lassa Fever: Endemic in West Africa, Lassa fever is caused by the Lassa virus and can range from mild to severe.

Diagnostic Tests and Treatments:

Diagnosing VHF involves various laboratory tests, including:

  • Polymerase chain reaction (PCR): Detects viral genetic material in blood or other body fluids.
  • Serology: Identifies specific antibodies produced by the body in response to the virus.
  • Antigen detection: Detects viral proteins in blood or tissue samples.

Treatment for VHF is primarily supportive, focusing on managing symptoms, preventing complications, and providing supportive care, including:

  • Intravenous fluids: Maintaining hydration and electrolyte balance.
  • Blood transfusions: Replacing lost blood components in cases of severe bleeding.
  • Antiviral drugs: In some cases, specific antiviral medications may be used, depending on the type of VHF.

Complications and Prevention Techniques:

VHF can lead to severe complications, including organ failure, shock, and death. Preventive measures include:

  • Personal protective measures: Wearing appropriate protective clothing, such as gloves, masks, and goggles, when in contact with infected individuals or animals.
  • Infection control: Implementing strict infection control practices in healthcare settings, including proper waste management, sterilization, and isolation precautions.
  • Vector control: Preventing mosquito and tick bites through the use of repellents and protective clothing, and addressing breeding sites.

Viral Hemorrhagic Fever (VHF) poses a significant health threat worldwide, including in India. In response to this challenge, Marengo Asia Hospitals  has established itself as a leading healthcare provider in the country, equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and a dedicated team of medical professionals specializing in managing VHF. This article highlights how Marengo Asia Hospitals  effectively handles patients with VHF, emphasizing their comprehensive approach to diagnosis, treatment, infection control, and ongoing support.

Specialized Expertise:

Marengo Asia Hospitals  has assembled a highly skilled team of infectious disease specialists, epidemiologists, intensivists, and other healthcare professionals with expertise in managing VHF. These professionals stay updated with the latest research and treatment protocols, ensuring that patients receive the best possible care.

Rapid and Accurate Diagnosis:

Diagnosing VHF requires precise and timely laboratory testing. Marengo Asia Hospitals has advanced diagnostic facilities capable of detecting viral genetic material, viral antigens, and specific antibodies in patient samples. These tests aid in identifying the causative virus and guiding appropriate treatment strategies.

Infection Control Measures:

The prevention of VHF transmission within healthcare facilities is of paramount importance. Marengo Asia Hospitals strictly adheres to infection control protocols, including strict isolation procedures, appropriate personal protective equipment for healthcare workers, and stringent waste management practices. These measures ensure the safety of patients, healthcare staff, and visitors, minimizing the risk of further spread.

Isolation Units and High Dependency Care:

To effectively manage VHF patients, Marengo Asia Hospitals has designated isolation units equipped with negative pressure rooms, ensuring the containment of potentially infectious particles. These units are staffed by trained professionals experienced in providing high dependency care to patients with VHF. Continuous monitoring of vital signs, administration of intravenous fluids, and close observation for any complications are key components of patient management.

Supportive Care and Symptom Management:

VHF can cause severe symptoms and complications, requiring comprehensive supportive care. Marengo Asia Hospitals ensures that patients receive prompt and appropriate treatment to address their symptoms, such as fever control, pain management, and management of fluid and electrolyte imbalances. Intravenous fluids, blood transfusions, and other supportive therapies are administered as needed, tailored to each patient’s condition.

Collaborative Approach:

Marengo Asia Hospitals  embraces a multidisciplinary approach to managing VHF cases. Experts from various fields collaborate closely to provide comprehensive care, including infectious disease specialists, intensivists, hematologists, and supportive care professionals. This collaborative effort ensures a holistic and well-coordinated approach to patient management, maximizing the chances of recovery.

Research and Continuous Learning:

Marengo Asia Hospitals  actively engages in research and continuous learning to enhance their understanding of VHF and improve patient outcomes. By staying at the forefront of scientific advancements, they can implement the latest treatment strategies and contribute to the broader medical community’s knowledge base.

Psychosocial Support and Rehabilitation:

VHF can be a traumatic experience for patients and their families. Marengo Asia Hospitals provides psychosocial support, counseling, and rehabilitation services to address the emotional and psychological needs of patients and their loved ones. These services play a crucial role in facilitating recovery and the transition back to a normal life.

Prevention and Public Education:

Beyond individual patient care, Marengo Asia Hospitals recognizes the importance of public education and prevention strategies. They actively participate in public health campaigns, disseminating accurate information about VHF, its transmission, and preventive measures. This proactive approach helps raise awareness and empowers communities to take preventive actions.

Marengo Asia Hospitals  is at the forefront of managing Viral Hemorrhagic Fever in India. Through their specialized expertise, rapid and accurate diagnosis, stringent infection control measures, comprehensive patient care, and ongoing support, they ensure the best possible outcomes for VHF patients.


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Marengo CIMS Hospital
Off Science City Road, Sola, Ahmedabad – 380060
Gujarat, INDIA

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Phone: 079 4805 1200 or 1008
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