What is Dengue Fever?
- Dengue fever also known as breakbone fever is an acute communicable disease caused by virus.
- Infectious Agent: Dengue virus (types 1,2,3,4)
Vector/ Virus Carrier
Dengue virus is spread by bite of mosquito Aedes aegyptii.
Mode of Transmission
Signs & Symptoms
- First 4 days
- High grade fever.
- Abdominal pain & Vomiting.
- Muscle pain/ joint pain/ Back pain/ Eye pain.
- Conjunctival Redness.
- 4th-7th Days
- Decrease in body temperature.
- Unstable Blood Pressure.
- Abdominal pain & Vomitting.
- Decreasing Pulse Pressure.
- Blood vomiting/ Red or Dark colour stools.
- Pin point skin bleeding (petechiae)/ Bruising/ Nasal bleeding.
- In few cases classical dengue fever may progress to Dengue Haemorrhagic fever which can cause BLEEDING from MULTIPLE SITES, WOSENING BP finally leading to SHOCK & DEATH.
SUSCEPTIBILITY & OCCURRENCE
- All persons are equally susceptible & both sexes are equally affected.
- Peak Dengue Season- June to November.
COMMON LAB TESTS
- Complete Blood Count
- Low Platelet count (100,000/mm3 or less)
- High Haematocrit (increased by 20% or more of base line value)
- Low Haemoglobin
- Low White count ( lymhopenia).
- Torniquet Test
- Positive tourniquet test- Appearance of more than 20 petechiae (pin point skin bleeding) per 2.5 cm square while taking BP.
- Serological tests- Presence of Antibodies against Dengue virus.
- Liver Function Test- Elevated liver enzymes.
- Currently there is no specific drug which can treat Dengue effectively.
- If you suspect that you have Dengue fever, you should SEEK MEDICAL HELP PROMPTLY AT A NEARBY HOSPITAL.
- Most patients with Classical Dengue recover within 1 to 2 weeks.
RED FLAG- Do NOT take ASPIRIN for fever as it can worsen the Haemorrhage.
PARACETAMOL is the preferred drug for managing fever.
- Papaya leaf extract tablets are now available which have shown to increase the blood platelet count in few patients.
Always consult your physician before taking these tablets.
- The most effective way to prevent Dengue fever is by keeping the environment clean by removing/cleaning the stagnant water so that mosquitos can’t breed.