Dengue fever is a transmittable disease found commonly in tropical areas. It is spread by a mosquito borne virus to humans commonly carried by a female species of Aedes aegypti. It is estimated that around 50 to 100 million people are infected globally with dengue fever and the grave dengue hemorrhagic fever causing thousands of death annually. This is why there is a need for people to know the signs and symptoms of this disease.
The starting symptoms of dengue fever could be a high fever, severe headache, nausea and vomiting, pain behind the eyes, backache and joint pains. Loss of appetite is also a common indication of dengue fever. Rash is the unique sign of this disease. It produces tiny red spots on the lower limbs and chest area of the body of an infected individual. Commonly, it appears after 3 or 4 days upon the start of fever.
In common cases of dengue fever, it takes up to seven days for a fever to subside. On the other hand, the fever symptoms are commonly higher and worse for dengue hemorrhagic fever and dengue shock syndrome, with nose bleeding as a symptom among others. Usually, this disease strikes adults and older children. Most often, the fever is diagnosed based on clinical signs, which are present to the individuals that are tested. When several clinical and laboratory criteria are met, dengue hemorrhagic fever is diagnosed. This includes spontaneous bruising and high hematocrit level. For shock syndrome, a diagnosis is given when the symptoms for dengue hemorrhagic fever are present and the individual, when tested, possesses clinical signs of a weak, rapid pulse and cold sticky skin.
Dengue fever is also known as the breakbone fever; the known cause is accounted to one of four related dengue virus with four known strains. This means that infection with one virus does not save a person against another type. The fever paces rapidly and when thought of as mild can be mistaken as the normal influenza. The transmission of this disease can only be via mosquitoes or contact with an actively ill person's blood. The dengue hemorrhagic fever and the dengue shock syndrome (which are graver cases of dengue fever) also occur in some dengue cases worldwide.
Dengue fever cases are particularly abundant in tropical regions, specifically urban areas. This is primarily due to the fact that these areas are the places where the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which is carrying the dengue virus, lives in. The most affected regions are countries in Central and South America, Asia and Africa. These mosquitoes that carry the virus are often bred in flowerpots, discarded tires, old rums and water containers.
Generally, dengue fever treatment can be done sufficiently at home; it usually waits until the virus has run its course. Currently, no vaccine or cure for dengue fever is known. On the other hand, dengue hemorrhagic fever and the shock syndrome are most commonly cured with fever management in the hospital and with fluid.
To prevent dengue fever, people should take care of their households so that mosquitoes do not dwell in their homes.