Dengue Fever – Pakistan
September 20, 2021 – A total of 21 cases of dengue reported in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The 21 individuals included 19 adults, 10 men and 9 women, and two boys under the age of 18 years. No deaths were reported and all individuals are receiving hospital treatment
Detailed information about the origin of the dengue infection (such as environment) is not discussed. It is likely that the individuals have been exposed to the mosquitoes that carry the virus. The individuals infected by the dengue virus were all from the suburban areas such as Tehkal, academy Town, Sufaid Dheri, Danish Abad, Sarband, and Landikotal. It is suspected that the dengue mosquito is highly populous in the suburb district; however, further investigation is needed.
Photo: Aedes aegypti or yellow fever mosquito.
Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease caused by the dengue virus. Dengue is spread by several species of female mosquitoes but typically by a mosquito that has white markings on its legs and sides.
Dengue can exist anywhere that mosquitoes live and is fast becoming a global problem. As the world’s climate becomes warmer, the mosquito’s distribution has increased significantly in the past decades. Dengue is fast becoming a larger problem than malaria.
Symptoms may include a high fever, headache, vomiting, muscle and joint pains, and a characteristic skin rash. In a small proportion of cases, the disease develops into severe dengue, also known as dengue hemorrhagic fever. A later reinfection can also cause serious complications.
Controlling mosquito populations is the main way to prevent and reduce dengue. Wearing long-sleeved clothing and long trousers when outdoors is always a good idea. In countries where the disease is endemic, use mosquito netting over the bed if the bedroom is not air conditioned or screened.
The first record of a case of probable dengue fever is in a Chinese medical encyclopedia from the Jin Dynasty (265–420 AD) which referred to a "water poison" associated with flying insects. The primary mosquito vector, A. aegypti, spread out of Africa in the 15th to 19th centuries due in part to increased globalization secondary to the slave trade.
The origins of the Spanish word dengue are unknown, but it is possibly derived from "dinga" in Swahili, meaning a disease caused by an evil spirit.
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