Extremely warm temperatures can be the cause of the worldwide peak in cases of dengue fever this year, a professor has warned.
The viral infection spread by mosquitoes would & # 39; Southeast Asia & # 39; have plagued and killed hundreds of people.
Vietnam alone reported 115,186 dengue cases from July 20, compared to just 29,000 for the same period last year, according to figures.
The Philippines is also experiencing an unusually severe outbreak, causing health officials to declare it a national emergency. There were 146,062 reported cases on July 20. This is compared to just 69,000 over the same period in 2018.
Dr. Rachel Lowe, of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, has warned that mosquitoes thrive in warm climates, with July being the hottest in the world ever.
& # 39; Extremely warm temperatures & # 39; may be the cause of this year's global peak in dengue fever, a professor warned. The infection is spread by certain mosquito species (stock)
Dengue fever is usually mild, with symptoms such as fever, severe headache, and pain behind the eyes.
There is no cure or specific treatment, with most cases passing by within a week without any complications.
Elderly patients or patients with other medical conditions can develop severe dengue fever.
This can lead to blood in the urine, organ failure and respiratory distress – when the lungs cannot provide the vital organs with sufficient oxygen.
A patient's blood pressure can also become dangerously low, which can cause shock and even death.
WHAT IS DENGUE FEVER?
Dengue fever is a viral infection that is spread by mosquitoes.
It is caught by people who visit or live in Asia, the Caribbean and North, South or Central America.
Mosquitoes in the UK do not spread the virus.
In most cases, the infection is mild and occurs within about a week.
Symptoms are usually:
- Severe headache
- Pain behind the eyes
- Muscle and joint pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Broad result
- Stomach ache
- Loss of appetite
There is no cure or specific treatment.
Patients can relieve their symptoms through pain killers, stay hydrated and rest.
In rare cases, dengue symptoms can develop into severe dengue fever.
Older patients or patients with other medical conditions are most at risk.
Severe symptoms of dengue fever can be:
- Severe skin bleeding with blood stains on and under the skin
- Blood in the urine and stool
- Respiratory problems – when the lungs cannot provide the vital organs with sufficient oxygen
- Organ failure
- Changes in mental state and unconsciousness
- Dangerously low blood pressure
Severe dengue fever is usually treated through a blood and platelet transfusion, IV fluids for rehydration and oxygen therapy when the levels are low.
Dengue is & # 39; widespread in the tropics & # 39 ;, with & # 39; local variations in risk influenced by rainfall and temperature & # 39 ;, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Dr. Lowe told AFP that the & # 39; extremely hot temperatures we saw this year & # 39; have been able to hold the virus.
The Aedes aegypti is the most important mosquito that spreads dengue fever, along with yellow fever and Zika.
It thrives in tropical climates and breeds in standing puddles of water.
In July 2019, the average global land and ocean surface temperature was 1.71 ° F (-16.8 ° C) above the 20th-century average of 60.4 ° F (15.7 ° C), according to the National Centers for Environmental Information.
This made it the hottest July since the records started in 1880, with the previous record of 2016 being defeated by -17.7 ° C.
Thailand has declared a state of emergency after reporting 43,200 dengue cases from August 4, according to statistics from the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control. This is compared to 28,100 for the same period last year.
From July 20, Cambodia reported about 39,000 cases, compared to 3,000 in 2018.
Laos, Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan also experience unusually high dengue figures.
And it is not only Asia that is being hit. From August 3, more than two million were suspected and confirmed cases in the & # 39; Americas region & # 39 ;, according to the Pan American Health Organization.
This is almost four times more than the 584,263 incidents in 2017 to 18, according to WHO statistics. Brazil, Colombia, Honduras and Nicaragua are the most affected, according to the ECDC.
Mosquitoes in the UK do not spread the dengue virus.
Dengue infections have been increasing since the 1970s due to rising temperatures and irregular monsoon seasons related to climate change, Yahoo reported.
The infection is also common in busy cities and causes outbreaks in fast-growing metropolises such as Rio de Janeiro and Ho Chi Minh City.
It is also claimed that international travel has brought the virus to new, vulnerable populations around the world.
Some experts even blame the use of plastic containers, pools and plant pots to provide the ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes.
Gawrie Loku Galappaththy, a dengue fever specialist at the Philippines in the Philippines, said to Yahoo: “If you have drought, people collect water in containers.
& # 39; That is a place where the dengue mosquito likes to breed. & # 39;
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