NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The island country of Timor-Leste, located in Southeast Asia, has recorded a huge spike in dengue fever during the month of January 2022, according to data from the Ministry of Health.

According to the latest update dated January 30, the country has recorded 1198 total dengue fever cases. This compares to 901 total cases reported in all of 2021.

A third  of the cases have been reported from the capital city of Dili (809), followed by Manatuto and Ermera with 77 cases each.

Concerning dengue fatalities, 20 deaths have been reported to date, 11 from Dili. In 2021, 11 total deaths were reported throughout.

Health officials report approximately 78 percent of the total cases to date are reported in children ages 1 to 14.

“We urge residents in Dili and other cities to immediately go to the nearest health facility when experiencing symptoms of dengue fever,” health ministry officials said.

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Dengue is a disease caused by a virus spread through mosquito bites. The disease can take up to 2 weeks to develop with illness generally lasting less than a week.

Health effects from dengue include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, rash, muscle and joint pain, and minor bleeding.

Dengue can become severe within a few hours. Severe dengue is a medical emergency, usually requiring hospitalization.

In severe cases, health effects can include hemorrhage (uncontrolled bleeding), shock (seriously low blood pressure), organ failure, and death.