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Dengue fever (pronounced DEN-geh) is a tropical disease caused by the flavivirus and transmitted to humans by the aedes aegypti mosquito. Dengue is present in tropical regions throughout the world, particularly South-East Asia. The only possible preventive measure is to avoid mosquito bites.
The symptoms of the disease are a sudden high fever (40-41°C) with strong head, joint and muscle pains. This is usually soon followed by a bright red rash, ofter starting on the lower limbs. Nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain are also common. Mild cases without rash may be easily misdiagnosed as flu. Dengue is not infectious.
The course of the disease typically lasts 6-7 days. There is no cure for the disease, but the symptoms can be alleviated with medication and fatality rates are less than 1 in 1000. The most serious complication is dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF), in which blood vessels start to leak and cause bleeding from the nose, mouth, and gums. Untreated DHF can lead to dengue shock syndrome (DSS), which is lethal in 90% of cases unless treated, in which case fatality rates fall to 5%.
In areas with dengue, if you feel ill after being attacked by mosquitoes you should not take aspirin. It may cause dengue to become very strong and, sometimes, lethal. Please, ask for a hospital or health center fast: the presence of dengue can be confirmed with a blood test.