News have it that Laoag has been declared to be in state of calamity following an alarming number of cases and deaths from dengue.
Dengue fever as described by the World Health Organization
Dengue is transmitted by the bite of an Aedes mosquito infected with any one of the four dengue viruses. It occurs in tropical and sub-tropical areas of the world. Symptoms appear 3—14 days after the infective bite. Dengue fever is a febrile illness that affects infants, young children and adults.
Symptoms range from a mild fever, to incapacitating high fever, with severe headache, pain behind the eyes, muscle and joint pain, and rash. There are no specific antiviral medicines for dengue. It is important to maintain hydration. Use of acetylsalicylic acid (e.g. aspirin) and non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (e.g. Ibuprofen) is not recommended.
Dengue haemorrhagic fever (fever, abdominal pain, vomiting, bleeding) is a potentially lethal complication, affecting mainly children. Early clinical diagnosis and careful clinical management by experienced physicians and nurses increase survival of patients.
- Dengue is a mosquito-borne infection that causes a severe flu-like illness, and sometimes a potentially lethal complication called dengue haemorrhagic fever.
- Global incidence of dengue has grown dramatically in recent decades.
- About two fifths of the world’s population are now at risk.
- Dengue is found in tropical and sub-tropical climates worldwide, mostly in urban and semi-urban areas.
- Dengue haemorrhagic fever is a leading cause of serious illness and death among children in some Asian countries.
- There is no specific treatment for dengue, but appropriate medical care frequently saves the lives of patients with the more serious dengue haemorrhagic fever.
- The only way to prevent dengue virus transmission is to combat the disease-carrying mosquitoes.
Please read these guidelines on preventing the Aedes mosquito from breeding.
The DOH launches D.E.N.G.U.E. Strategy
Instead of confining patients in a hospital facility, parents and caregivers can practice the D.E.N.G.U.E. strategy. D.E.N.G.U.E. stands for D – daily monitoring of patient’s status, E – encourage intake of oral fluids like oresol, water, juices, etc, N – note any dengue warning signs like persistent vomiting and bleeding, G – give paracetamol for fever and NOT aspirin, because aspirin induces bleeding, U – use mosquito nets and E – early consultation is advised for any warning signs