World News

Dengue Alert in Nicaragua

There have been alarming cases of dengue in Nicaragua 2019, with a large increase in deaths due to the disease.

Aedes Aegypti, mosquito that transmits dengue.
(Photo by James Gathany, courtesy of CDC.)

As of September 14, there have been 108,171 suspected cases, 5,702 confirmed, and 19 dead. The number of deaths have increased significantly from previous years; two were victims of the virus in 2017 and six in 2018.

The director of epidemiology from the Ministry of Health (MINSA), Martha Reyes, explains that there is a steady growth rate in the number of suspected and confirmed cases between August and September. For instance, there were 8,984 cases more in the first week of September compared to the last week of August. Besides, The International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) reports that the incidence rate in the country is 441 per 100,000 inhabitants, which makes it the country with the second highest incidence rate but with the lowest fatality rate.

In addition, Reyes confirms that the majority are infected with the Dengue Virus Type 2, which is described as more “aggressive” and frequently associated with severe diseases. Doctor Luis Fulgenico believes that the heavy rain during the winter could have increased reproduction rates of the Aedes Aegypti, the transmitter of dengue, zika, and chikungunya; therefore letting the infection be more widespread.

Dengue is a virus transmitted by mosquitos bites. The most common symptoms of this are: headache, muscle and joint pain, rash, nausea or vomiting, and eye pain (typically behind the eyes). There is no special treatment for dengue and it is recommended to go see a doctor and rest as much as possible; a person usually recovers after a week. However, there is a more serious form of this disease: severe dengue, which can lead to shock, internal bleeding, and death in some cases. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the symptoms of these are: stomach pain, nose or gum bleeding, vomiting at least three times in 24 hours, and fatigue. Severe dengue is a medical emergency and it is strongly advised to seek medical help immediately.

While dengue is not treatable, it is preventable. It is advised to wear mosquito repellents to avoid mosquito bites and clean items inside or outside the house that hold water, since mosquitos lay their eggs in moist, damp areas.

If you want to know more about dengue, visit the CDC page linked below:

CDC: Dengue

Categories: World News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *