Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)
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Perhaps no other disease has been as effective in turning the courses of history of nations as the yellow fever. As the yellow plague in Europe, it caused a complete deterioration of the continent that had already suffered a spectacular loss of the Roman Empire in the sixth century AD. In Napoleon’s conquest at Haiti, the yellow fever was spread among his troops, and history records that half of his troops succumbed to the fever. In the late 18 th century, yellow fever single-handedly wiped out one tenth of the total population of Philadelphia. Wherever this disease has struck, it has done so in full measure. No wonder then that it becomes extremely important to know fully well about the limits of this disease.

Definition of Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)


Yellow fever is a highly infectious viral fever that is characterized by a fever and a vomit that is typically black in color. The yellow fever is known by different names all over the world – yellow plague, black vomit, pitta jwara, all are different terms referring to yellow fever.

Yellow fever is called so due to the jaundice that sets in some of the patients, thus yellowing their skin. Apart from jaundice, it can cause hemorrhagic illnesses that may lead to the death of the patient.

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Causes of Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

The yellow fever is a viral disease. The virus responsible for the production of the fever is the Flavivirus. The yellow fever virus - the smallest RNA known to man - gets activated only within the saliva of an insect vector. Hence, an insect is necessary for its transmission. The insect vector in the yellow fever is a mosquito. Mosquitoes such as the Aedes aegypti, Aedes simpsoni and Aedes africanus are known to carry the Flavivirus with them. When the mosquito carrying a Flavivirus bites a healthy person, the virus is transmitted into the bloodstream of the human. This causes the infection of yellow fever in that person.

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Symptoms of Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

There are several symptoms associated with pitta jwara. But the most prominent symptoms that are observed are as follows:-

  • High fever accompanied by chills
  • Recurrent muscle cramps and aches
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Backache

In some cases, the following additional symptoms are observed:-

  • Red tongue
  • Red eyes
  • Flushed face

In dire cases, yellow fever can get complicated to cause severe liver and kidney problems. Liver problems can cause jaundice, due to which the skin appears yellow. This is where the name ‘yellow fever’ originates from. Hemorrhage can occur in the gastrointestinal tract causing a black colored vomitus to be expelled at regular intervals.

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Complications due to Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

Yellow fever symptoms are generally mild in the beginning, but they complicate themselves quite rapidly. The following are the important complications of yellow fever:-

(i) First and foremost is the complication of the liver. Yellow fever infection can cause a severe disorder in the liver, which may cause the onset of jaundice-like conditions. This is accompanied by yellowing of the skin and the eyes.

(ii) There can be hemorrhage of the gastrointestinal tract. This causes vomiting. The vomitus is black in color and of the consistency of coffee-grind.

(iii) Proteinuria can occur. Proteinuria is a disorder of the kidney in which excess serum proteins are expelled through the urine making the urine frothy and foamy.

(iv) Prolonged affectation of the yellow fever can cause deliriums, which can be followed by strokes and comas. Such complications usually lead to death.

(v) Other minor complications are low blood pressure (hypotension) and depression.

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Transmission of Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

The pitta jwara is very topical in its epidemiology. Rarely has the disease left the continents of Africa and South America. For this reason, the disease is also recognized as a disease that originates from the rainforests.

The transmission of yellow fever follows three distinct cycles. The following are these three cycles in the transmission:-

(i) Sylvatic or Jungle Cycle – This is the cycle that occurs in the tropical rainforests, with monkeys being the prime carriers. Monkeys are bitten by the mosquito carriers of yellow fever. These infected monkeys are then bitten by other mosquitoes and thus the flavivirus is spread among a wide population of mosquitoes through the intermediate agency of monkeys. Humans living in the close vicinity of the monkeys are also infected by mosquito bites in this cycle.

(ii) Intermediate Cycle – In the intermediate cycle, the virus is transmitted among the humans living in the outskirts of forest areas, such as the savannahs of Africa. Here, the yellow fever virus enters a moderate size of population and small-scale epidemics can arise. Both monkeys and humans are infected and the epidemics may spread to other nearby human settlements.

(iii) Urban Cycle – The urban cycle occurs when the mosquito is transmitted from the rural settlements to the urban areas. This happens when people from the villages migrate to the cities, or through travelers from the villages to the cities.

Hence it is seen that though mosquitoes are the prime vectors of the disease, they are not the majority transmitters. Monkeys and humans themselves are responsible for transmitting the virus of yellow fever from one area to other giving rise to epidemics.

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Prevention of Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

Yellow fever transmission is mostly done through people working and living around either inside or near the jungles. Hence, the prevention of yellow fever on a governmental scale begins from these areas. The main steps for the prevention are as follows:-

People working in the jungles such as woodcutters and lumbermen are constantly given vaccinations against the disease.

Insecticides are used on a large scale in jungle areas that have an epidemiological history of yellow fever.

Houses in and near the forest areas are screened.

Stagnant waters near human settlements are cleaned and sprayed with suitable insecticides for killing the breeding mosquitoes in them.

In some jungle areas, people are made to wear protective clothing while venturing out into the forests.

If a person is infected with yellow fever, then immediate steps must be taken to quarantine the person. All measures must be taken to prevent any further mosquitoes from biting the person. This would ensure that the disease does not spread from the infected person to the other healthy ones through mosquito bites.

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Diet for Preventing Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

A very simple diet must be taken while infected with yellow fever. Actually patients of yellow fever may either have no appetite at all, or may not feel like eating even if hungry. For this reason, the diet must be quite simple.

The major component of the diet should be a carbohydrate. For yellow fever, rice gruel (kanji) is recommended as it can easily get assimilated within the body. It can be flavored with a dash of lemon juice. Some curds can be mixed with the rice in order to make it easier to digest and also to give it flavor.

Since there is a lot of dehydration in people with yellow fever, the diet must provide lots of fluids. Soups of boiled vegetables sprinkled with some black pepper are good appetizers, and at the same time they are easy to consume and digest. Fresh fruit juices must also be had, especially of the fruits that are rich in vitamin C content.

All oily, spicy and sugary foods must be strictly avoided.

It is also advisable to stop heavy foods such as meats, poultry and fish as long as the infection lasts. Stick to a vegetarian diet.

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Ayurvedic Treatment for Yellow Fever (Pitta Jwara)

Yellow fever actually has no treatment. People with yellow fever must only take sufficient rest and supplement the loss of bodily fluids by consuming several liquids in their diet.

Cayenne pepper, known as mircha in Hindi, with the biological name of Capsicum baccatum and Capsicum frutescens is used in some branches of alternative medicine for the treatment of yellow fever. But the effectiveness of cayenne pepper is not confirmed by medical science.

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This is so very good but coliques please email (abdulmalikalh[@][email protected]) me with much detail about cool or ice water (can yellow fever carrier drink very cool water) thank you
#1 - Abdulmalik alh[@]an nigeria - 09/03/2011 - 04:24
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