Pakistan : The first sign that something was wrong in the small southern Pakistani town of Ratto Dero appeared in February.
A handful of worried parents had taken their children to the doctor, complaining that their little ones could not shake off a fever.
Within weeks, more children came forward suffering from a similar illness.
Bemused, Dr Imran Aarbani sent the children’s blood away for testing. What came back confirmed his worst fears. The children were infected with HIV – and no-one knows why.
“By 24 April, 15 children had tested positive, though none of their parents were found to be carrying the virus,” the hospital doctor told the BBC.
It was only the tip of the iceberg.
In the past month, more than 607 people – 75% of them children – have been diagnosed with the virus after rumours of an outbreak sent families rushing to a special camp set up at the town’s government hospital by the health department of Sindh province.
Perhaps more surprising, however, is the fact that this is not the first outbreak to hit the region in recent years.