Sunday 18 November, 2018

Dengue fever suspected in Trelawny man's death

Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease.

Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease.

The Ministry of Health has confirmed a suspected dengue haemorrhagic fever-related death in late August.

The deceased is an adult male from the parish of Trelawny, according to the health officials in a news release. No further details about the man or the circumstances around his death were provided.

Dengue haemorrhagic fever is a rare complication of the mosquito-borne disease dengue fever and results in internal bleeding and bleeding under the skin, which can lead to death, the ministry said.

"Immediate medical attention should be sought once an infected person begins to vomit, have severe abdominal pain, develop a petechial rash, feel very weak, or get confused," said health officials in the release.

Dengue fever meanwhile is usually a mild illness in which a person may get a fever, headache, joint, and muscle pains, the ministry said. 

"Rest and adequate hydration are usually enough to see one through the period of illness. The recommended treatment for the fever is acetaminophen/paracetamol," said the release.

Members of the public are being urged not to use aspirin, diclofenac, ibuprofen, or any of the medications/pain relievers known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).  These drugs, when used to treat the fever in dengue, have been known to increase the severity of the disease, according to the ministry.

In keeping with trends in recent years, the ministry said it expects that the number of cases of mosquito-borne diseases will increase in late August to October. In anticipation of this, the ministry said it has begun mosquito-control activities, including a public education campaign, home inspections, destruction of breeding sites and fogging.

According to the health ministry, the number of dengue cases so far this year remains below the epidemic threshold, that is, within expected levels and the Ministry will continue to monitor reports of mosquito-borne diseases through its national epidemiological surveillance system. 

Members of the public are encouraged to play their  part in ensuring  that  the cases are minimised by monitoring water storage containers for mosquito breeding; keeping surroundings free of debris; destroying or treating potential mosquito breeding sites; wearing protective clothing; using a DEET-containing mosquito repellant and, as much as possible, staying indoors at dusk with windows and doors closed.

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