Dengue Is Every One’s Problem
The Exterminators (Pvt) Ltd., Sri Lanka’s premier award winning pest management company carried out a special CSR project and awareness programme themed “Stop Dengue” in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Railway Department and Youth FM last month. The dengue awareness campaign commenced from Colombo Fort Railway Station to the Kandy Railway Station via the Kandy Intercity Express (two and half hour train journey). All travelers in the train were educated on dengue prevention tips. Free posters, pamphlets and stickers were distributed to all passengers and thereafter the Stop Dengue campaign was carried out in the Kandy City to educate the public on dengue, dengue mosquito and preventive methods.
The Exterminators (Pvt) Ltd is the only ISO 9001-2008 & ISO 14001-2004 (SLSI) certified pest control company in the island and is affiliated to the National Pest Management Association USA and the American Mosquito Control Association. Free posters, pamphlets, stickers (Sinhala/English) could be collected from branches islandwide. For dengue awareness programmes for schools call Praminda Pelpola 0115-760760 or 0777-358202 or visit www.pestcontrol.lk
What is dengue fever (DF)?
Dengue infection is caused by a virus. It occurs commonly as dengue fever. Occasionally the patient suffering from dengue may develop bleeding. Common sites for bleeding are nose, gums or skin. Sometimes, the patient may have coffee ground vomiting or black stools. This indicates bleeding in gastro intestinal tracts and it is serious. The patient with dengue who has bleeding has dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF ). Rarely the patient suffering from dengue may develop shock, then it is called dengue shock syndrome ( DSS).
When should I suspect dengue?
Dengue should be suspected when you have a sudden onset of fever. The fever is high 103-105 degrees F or 39-40 degrees C. It is accompanied with severe headache (mostly in the forehead), pain behind the eyes, body aches and pains, rash on the skin and nausea or vomiting. The fever lasts for 5-7 days. In some patients, fever comes down on third or fourth day but comes back. All the above symptoms and signs may not be present in the patient. The patient feels much discomfort after the illness.
There are several types of fever, when should dengue be suspected?
The characteristics of dengue that make it different from other causes of fever are the pain behind the eyes, severe pains in the muscles, severe joint pains, and skin rashes. These features make the diagnosis of suspected dengue likely. The severe joint pains caused by DF is the reason why DF is also called break-bone fever.
What is the difference between suspected and probable case of dengue?
If a patient suspected to be having dengue has reduced platelets or an increase in blood haematocrit, then the patient has probable dengue. These additional findings makes dengue more likely. Patients with dengue may not have a high haematocrit if the person was anaemic to start with. (Platelets are cells in blood that help to stop bleeding. Haematocrit indicates the thickness of blood).
Can you get dengue again after suffering from it once?
It is possible to get dengue more than once. Dengue can occur because of four different but related strains of dengue virus. If a person has suffered from one virus, there can be a repeat occurrence of dengue if a different strain is involved subsequently. Being affected by one strain offers no protection against the others. A person could suffer from dengue more than once in her/his lifetime.
Can the diagnosis of dengue be confirmed?
There are laboratory tests that provide direct or indirect evidence for dengue fever. These tests provide evidence for the occurrence of dengue infection. There are some additional tests that can help to identify the type of dengue infection. The tests for confirmation of dengue should be done in reliable laboratories.
How can someone get dengue fever?
Dengue fever occurs following the bite of an infected mosquito Aedes aegypti. This type of mosquito has a peculiar white spotted body and legs and is easy to recognise. It breeds in clean water and has a flight range of only 100 – 200 metres. The mosquito gets the dengue virus after biting a human being infected with dengue virus.