Muzaffarpur AES deaths: SC asks Centre, Bihar to explain steps to curb outbreak The death of children in Muzaffarpur in Bihar due to acute encephalopathy could have been prevented had a health awareness campaign been conducted and correct information provided to the families, said an Indian Medical Association (IMA) study team, which released its ground-report on Monday.The team said that it can be reasonably concluded that the prevailing heat and humidity, together with malnutrition, contributed substantially to the deaths. Dehydration, hypoglycaemia and the heat syndrome too played a significant part.“Awareness is key. Tepid sponging and correction of dehydration and hypoglycaemia can start right from home. A package programme focussed on health awareness, free meals to children, especially at night, and public availability of ORS (oral rehydration solution) may be simple interventions which may prevent further deaths of this scale,” noted the report.Also Read The Association said going by its observations, there are no definite conclusions that can be made about the aetiology of the syndrome as of now.“The current problem seems unlikely to be an infectious cause with the present evidence and we feel that litchi consumption cannot be attributed as the major factor, as even infants have been affected. The persistence of very high atmospheric with temperature humidity through out the day and night without fluctuations might be causing a heat syndrome in children,” noted the report.It added that reduction in body temperature with tepid sponging, increased fluid intake and adequate food intake may prevent this syndrome. While affected children have to be given IV dextrose for correction of hypoglycaemia to prevent significant brain injury, foolproof scientific, epidemiological study and follow up among children who survived in previous episodes (in 2014 and 2015) should be done systematically.Measures to uplift the living conditions of the affected population should be undertaken as an immediate package programme, noted the Association.