Malaysia has been experiencing an extremely hot spell in recent days due to the dry season and haze phenomenon taking place in its northern neighbours such as Thailand and Myanmar.
Unfortunately for one boy in Bachok, Kelantan, the hot spell became the cause of his demise, making him the first ever victim to die of heatstroke.
Fell gravely ill during Raya
According to Wanie Alias, she told the New Straits Times that her 11-year-old son Muhamad Syamil Aqil was up and about cycling with his siblings during the first two days of Raya.
On Monday (Apr 24) however, he had a fever and began vomitting. His body temperature later shot up to between 37 and 38 degrees Celsius, raising alarm bells in his mother.
“On the fourth day of Hari Raya (April 25) after Subuh prayers, I noticed that Syamil was already very weak and while we were getting ready to go to the health clinic, he suddenly had an epileptic seizure,” she recounted.
Aware of his deteriorating condition, Wanie rushed Syamil to the Balai Health Clinic, where the doctor on duty gave him oxygen and branula to insert fluids.
Tragically, Syamil’s pulse went silent and he lost consciousness, where he later passed away despite the doctor’s best efforts to save his life through Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
‘His internal organs had all dried up’
Wanie also revealed that based on the autopsy report by Raja Perempuan Zainab II Hospital’s (HRPZ II) Forensics Unit , Syamil had died due to heatstroke and dehydration.
All his internal organs, including his heart and kidneys were ‘burnt’. Even the blood and fluids in his body had dried up too.
“I urge all parents to learn from this tragedy and not let their children play under the scorching sun as temperatures are quite high right now,” she said.
How to deal with heatstroke?
Heatstroke is a condition which can be fatal when the body is exposed to high temperatures for long periods of time, leading to dehydration and organ failure.
Among some of the symptoms of heatstroke are nausea/vomitting, headaches, dizziness, and muscle cramps. If not treated immediately, it can cause seizures, unconsciousness, and in some cases, death.
How can you protect yourself from heatstroke? Here are some ways to do so:
- Move to a shady location
- Wear less clothing
- Drink lots of water
- Turn on the fan/air-conditioner