The dengue fever outbreak has increased further both in numbers and in geography, according to health ministry officials.
The number of people infected with dengue fever in Japan now totals 124 in 17 prefectures, the Japan News reports. Four of the 10 were bitten by mosquitoes carrying the dengue virus in Shinjuku Central Park in central Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward. Five are believed to have been infected in Yoyogi Park in Shibuya Ward and nearby Meiji Shrine.
A teenage girl from Saitama Prefecture, which was reported August 27, was the first locally acquired dengue case in Japan since 1945.
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 mild bleeding (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.