Dengue Fever is a viral infection spread by mosquitoes in tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. It is found in Asia (South and South East Asia) and Central America and there have been a number of recent outbreaks in Brazil. Dengue Fever is spread by infected mosquitoes that bite mainly during the daytime as opposed to the Malarial Mosquitoes which bit mainly during the night time.
Common Dengue Fever Symptoms
After an incubation period of about a week, Dengue Fever usually starts with a high temperature as well as various other flu-like symptoms including headache and cough as well as a rash. Most cases lead to recovery but some can lead to complications associated with haemorrhagic fever. This is a quick deterioration in condition resulting in bleeding and high blood pressure. Left untreated Dengue Haemorrhagic Fever can be fatal in up to 40% of cases, but when treated this is around 1%-2%.
Avoiding Dengue Fever
The is no vaccination for dengue fever and treatment is supportive only. Travellers are advised to avoid being bitten by mosquitos during the day time but particularly around dusk and dawn. It is recommended to use insect repellant such as DEET 50%, wear long sleeves and long trousers to cover exposed skin, sleep under a mosquito net ad burn mosquito coils.