Walk-In Lab

At least a dozen countries in the Western hemisphere reported an increase in dengue fever cases nationally or in parts of the country, including Paraguay.

Aedes albopictus/FotoshopTofs
Aedes albopictus/FotoshopTofs

In 2018, more than 31,000 total dengue cases, including 3,414 confirmed cases were reported. This is up from 1,800 total cases and some 600 confirmed cases in 2017.

In addition, while Paraguay saw no severe dengue cases or deaths last year, 15 dengue-related fatalities were seen in 2018.

The General Directorate of Health Surveillance noted (computer translated) the highest percentage of suspected cases (73 percent) were from Central and Asunción.

Dengue serotypes 1 and 4 circulated in Paraguay this year.

More than 500,000 total dengue cases were reported in the Americas in 2018, including 285 deaths. Brazil accounted for nearly half the cases and deaths.

Dengue is a viral infection transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. There are four closely related but antigenically different serotypes of the virus that can cause dengue (DEN1, DEN 2, DEN 3, DEN 4).

  • Dengue Fever (DF) – marked by an onset of sudden high fever, severe headache, pain behind the eyes, and pain in muscles and joints. Some may also have a rash and varying degree of bleeding from various parts of the body (including nose, mouth and gums or skin bruising).Dengue has a wide spectrum of infection outcome (asymptomatic to symptomatic). Symptomatic illness can vary from dengue fever (DF) to the more serious dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF).

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  • Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF) – is a more severe form, seen only in a small proportion of those infected. DHF is a stereotypic illness characterized by 3 phases; febrile phase with high continuous fever usually lasting for less than 7 days; critical phase (plasma leaking) lasting 1-2 days usually apparent when fever comes down, leading to shock if not detected and treated early; convalescence phase lasting 2-5 days with improvement of appetite, bradycardia (slow heart rate), convalescent rash (white patches in red background), often accompanied by generalized itching (more intense in palms and soles), and diuresis (increase urine output).
  • Dengue Shock Syndrome (DSS) — Shock syndrome is a dangerous complication of dengue infection and is associated with high mortality. Severe dengue occurs as a result of secondary infection with a different virus serotype. Increased vascular permeability, together with myocardial dysfunction and dehydration, contribute to the development of shock, with resultant multiorgan failure.