World Health Organizationwarns of mosquito-borne disease that is a global threat

World Health Organizationwarns of mosquito-borne disease that is a global threat

Dengue Fever: Doctor outlines signs and symptoms of infection

Sir Farrar said warming global temperatures could result in a magnitude of disease across the world.

“We need to talk much more proactively about dengue,” said Sir Farrar. “We need to really prepare countries for how they will deal with the additional pressure that will come… in the future in many, many big cities.”

Should infected mosquitos from Mexico travel up to the US, dengue fever could turn into an endemic.

Sir Farrar told Reuters: “I really worry when this becomes a big issue.”

There are European countries where 


has already been found, which are:

  • Croatia
  • France
  • Italy
  • Spain
  • Portugal and Madeira.

READ MORE… Urgent health warning as tourist hotspots struck by outbreak of deadly disease

The NHS says there may not always be signs of an infection, but if symptoms do appear, it can take up to 10 days from being bitten by an infected mosquito.

Symptoms of dengue fever can include:

  • A high temperature
  • A severe headache
  • Pain behind your eyes
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Feeling or being sick
  • Swollen glands
  • A blotchy rash made up of flat or slightly raised spots – this can affect large areas of your body.

There is no treatment for dengue, aside from rest, drinking plenty of fluids, and taking paracetamol.

However, the NHS cautions: “Do not take anti-inflammatory painkillers like ibuprofen or aspirin. These can cause bleeding problems if you have dengue.”

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There are times when hospitalisation is required, which is when severe symptoms of dengue fever appear.

Severe symptoms of dengue fever can include:

  • Severe tummy pain
  • Repeatedly being sick
  • Fast breathing
  • Bleeding gums or nose
  • Extreme tiredness (fatigue)
  • Being unable to relax (restlessness)
  • Blood in your vomit or poo.

If you are experiencing symptoms of severe dengue fever and you’ve been to any of these countries, do call NHS 999 or go to A&E:

  • Africa and Asia
  • Central and South America
  • The Caribbean
  • The Pacific islands
  • North America
  • Croatia
  • France
  • Italy
  • Spain
  • Portugal and Madeira.

The NHS adds: “If you have severe dengue, you’ll need to stay in hospital until you recover.”

How to prevent dengue fever

The best way to protect yourself from dengue fever is to protect yourself against mosquitos.

Tips include:

  • Wearing long-sleeved clothing and trousers to cover your arms and legs, particularly during early morning and early evening
  • Use insect repellent on your skin
  • Close windows and doors whenever possible, or use blinds or screens
  • Sleep under a mosquito net treated with insecticide, including during the day.

Most people who develop dengue fever are likely to recover from the illness without hospital treatment.

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