Effects of papaya leaves on thrombocyte counts in dengue – a case report
Pages with reference to book, From 364 To 366
Osama Siddique, Ayesha Sundus ( Student, Dow University of Health Sciences, Karachi. )
Mohammad Faisal Ibrahim ( Civil Hospital Karachi. )
Carica papaya L. is the only species within the Caricaceae genus, and the palm-like tree has segmented leaves, yellow flowers and large black seeded yellow to orange fruits.1 C. papaya L. fruit juice and leaves extracts have demonstrated anti-cancer,2 anti-oxidative,3 anti-inflammatory,4 anti-bacterial,5 nephro-protective,6 hepato-protective7 activity against toxins, hypoglycaemic, hypolipidaemic effects8 and anti-sickling properties in sickle cell disease.9
Dengue fever (flaviviridae family of viruses) is an arthropod-borne disease carried by Aedes ayegypti with four different serotypes 1, 2, 3 and 4.10 Dengue fever cases have been on the rise in Pakistan and other developing countries. It is estimated that there are between 50 and 100 million cases of dengue fever (DF) and about 500,000 cases of dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF) each year which require hospitalisation.10 There is no known anti-viral chemotherapy for DF yet. Many vaccine trials have been done, but none has produced a satisfactory outcome.10 Management includes supportive measures like anti-pyretic, hydration, blood and blood products and pain killers. Infection induces a life-long immunity to that particular serotype, but secondary infection with another serotype is dangerous and life-threatening due to higher risks of DHF.11 The only way to prevent dengue virus acquisition is to avoid being bitten by a vector mosquito.10
With such high rates of incidence and mortality it would be useful to have a regimen improving the outcome of the disease. Investigating the effect of papaya leaves on the platelets can help our physicians in helping patients with diseases like DF where the platelets are the major cause of complications and mortality. Here we present a DF case who responded positively to the administration of papaya leaves extract.