Dengue outbreak making the headlines again in Mauritius, Fiji, West Pacific and Brazil

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What is Dengue ?

Dengue fever is a disease caused by a family of viruses that are transmitted by mosquitoes. It is an acute illness of sudden onset that usually follows a benign course with symptoms such as headache, fever, exhaustion, severe muscle and joint pain, swollen lymph nodes (lymphadenopathy), and rash. The presence of fever, rash, and headache (the “dengue triad”) is particularly characteristic of dengue. Other signs of dengue fever include bleeding gums, severe pain behind the eyes, and red palms and soles.

Dengue (pronounced DENG-gay) can affect anyone but tends to be more severe in people with compromised immune systems. Because it is caused by one of five serotypes of virus, it is possible to get dengue fever multiple times. However, an attack of dengue produces immunity for a lifetime to that particular viral serotype to which the patient was exposed.

Dengue goes by other names, including “breakbone” or “dandy fever.” Victims of dengue often have contortions due to the intense joint and muscle pain, hence the name breakbone fever. Slaves in the West Indies who contracted dengue were said to have dandy fever because of their postures and gait.

Dengue haemorrhagic fever is a more severe form of the viral illness. Symptoms include headache, fever, rash, and evidence of haemorrhage in the body. Petechiae (small red or purple splotches or blisters under the skin), bleeding in the nose or gums, black stools, or easy bruising are all possible signs of haemorrhage. This form of dengue fever can be life-threatening and can progress to the most severe form of the illness, dengue shock syndrome.

According to the World Health Organisation ( WHO ) states that dengue is not transmitted directly from person-to-person and that people who have dengue fever should rest, drink plenty of fluids and reduce the fever using paracetamol or see a doctor.

How can dengue fever be prevented?

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The transmission of the virus to mosquitoes must be interrupted to prevent the illness. To this end, patients are kept under mosquito netting until the second bout of fever is over and they are no longer contagious.

The prevention of dengue requires control or eradication of the mosquitoes carrying the virus that causes dengue. In nations plagued by dengue fever, people are urged to empty stagnant water from old tires, trash cans, and flower pots. Governmental initiatives to decrease mosquitoes also help to keep the disease in check but have been poorly effective.

To prevent mosquito bites, wear long pants and long sleeves. For personal protection, use mosquito repellent sprays that contain DEET when visiting places where dengue is endemic. There are no specific risk factors for contracting dengue fever, except living in or travelling to an area where the mosquitoes and virus are endemic. Limiting exposure to mosquitoes by avoiding standing water and staying indoors two hours after sunrise and before sunset will help. The Aedes aegypti mosquito is a daytime biter with peak periods of biting around sunrise and sunset. It may bite at any time of the day and is often hidden inside homes or other dwellings, especially in urban areas.

There is currently no vaccination available for dengue fever. There is a vaccine undergoing clinical trials, but it is too early to tell if it will be safe or effective. Early results of clinical trials show that a vaccine may be available by 2015.

While searching about dengue fever and autoimmune system deficit I fell on this..Felt like sharing as you might not know when and how well it can help. But It it advised to consult your doctor or an Ayurvedic doctor as i’m not so sure about the benefits of the papaya leaves and till how far it’s consumable!
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News on Dengue fever

Articles of dengue outbreak in Mauritius 2014
1. The Ministry of Health are on high alert Wednesday, March 19 after 16 cases of dengue fever have been identified, namely 15 to Triolet and Belvédère. 
2. Of 15 patients, six are from the same family, three of another family and the remaining six live in the same neighborhood

News for Brazil
World Cup 2014: Brazil ‘must act to prevent outbreak of dengue fever’ during summer tournament, warns expert 

News for the Pacific area
Dengue fever outbreaks in Pacific prompt health warning 

News for Fiji

 

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