Epidemic dropsy is tropical disease caused due to consumption of adulterated mustard oil with argemone. Epidemic dropsy is characterised by systemic illness affecting almost all the systems of the body especially GIT disturbances,oedema of lower limbs,blotchy erythema of skin and features of cardiac failure.
ETIOLOGY: Epidemic dropsy is distributed in region where consumption of mustard oil is more especially in places like Bangladesh,Assam,Bihar,Uttar pradesh. Epidemic dropsy is caused due to contamination of mustard oil with argemone mexicana(prickly poppy) which contains toxic alkaloid(sanguinarine). Common in lower and middle class.
Clinically Epidemic dropsy is characterised by insidious onset or sometimes suddden onset of symptoms.
Premonitory symptoms-vague abdominal pain,flatulence and diarrhea,heaviness of lower extremities,with tingling and numbness,breathlessness on exertion,mild to moderate fever.
GIT symptoms-anorexia,nausea,voimiting ,abdominal pain and borborygmi,diarrhea due to intestinal mucosal congestion,bleeding from gums,haematemesis and melaena ,bleeding piles.
Skin symptoms-oedema of legs associated with erythema(due to subcutaneous vascular dilatation),ecchymotic patches(due to telangiectatic dilation of blood vessels) commonly seen over lower part of chest,abdomen,buttocks and thighs,gradually oedema spreads to thighs,sacral region,trunk,hands and ultimately face is also involved patchy pigmentation over the forehead and malar bone.
- CVS symptoms like dyspnoea and palpitation on exertion.
- Nervous system-heaviness of limbs with tingling numbness.
- Urinary system-oligouria(decreased urine output).
- COMPLICATIONS-cardiac failure,glaucoma.
Use of contaminated mustard oil to be stopped for cooking purpose.
Salt restricted diet,nutritious easily digestible diet.