The number of dengue fever cases reported in the current outbreak in Cairns has risen to nine, according to Queensland Health today.
Nine cases of the mosquito-borne illness have been confirmed in the Cairns suburbs of Edmonton, Mount Sheridan, Bentley Park, Trinity Beach and Mooroobool. During last season, 136 dengue fever cases were reported.
Director of Tropical Public Health Services Richard Gair warned residents to be extra vigilant to stop the spread of the virus which can cause fever, severe headaches, vomiting and diarrhea. “These confirmed cases show we can’t be complacent, and only a small amount of water can make areas perfect breeding grounds for mosquitoes,” Dr Gair said.
Dengue fever is a disease caused by any one of four closely related dengue viruses (DENV 1, DENV 2, DENV 3, or DENV 4). The viruses aretransmitted to humans by the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito.
The principal symptoms of dengue fever are high fever, severe headache, severe pain behind the eyes,joint pain, muscle and bone pain, rash, and mildbleeding (e.g., nose or gums bleed, easy bruising). Generally, younger children and those with their first dengue infection have a milder illness than older children and adults.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates there may be 50–100 million dengue infections worldwide every year. However, new research from the University of Oxford and the Wellcome Trust, using cartographic approaches, estimate there to be 390 million dengue infections per year worldwide.
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