Sri Lanka health officials are reporting 8,904 dengue fever through the end of February 2019.

Colombo (2017), Jaffna (1354) and Gampaha (1093) districts have seen the most cases.

Image/Robert Herriman
Image/Robert Herriman

Dengue fever is an infectious disease carried by mosquitoes and caused by any of four related dengue viruses (DENV-2 serotype is prevalent in this outbreak). This disease used to be called “break-bone fever” because it sometimes causes severe joint and muscle pain that feels like bones are breaking.

People get the dengue virus from the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito. It is not contagious from person to person.

There are three types of dengue fever in order of less severe to most: the typical uncomplicated dengue fever, dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHS) and dengue shock syndrome (DSS).