Dengue fever or dengue- hemorrhagic fever (more severe form) is an infectious tropical disease caused by a bite of the mosquito that carries the dengue virus and is prevalent in the tropical regions of the world.
Over the recent years, there has been a radical increase in the cases of dengue. Dengue fever infects as many as 400 million people each year, with 40% of world’s population being at risk of exposure and infections. The dengue virus kills an estimated 20,000 people each year. India has the highest number of dengue cases in the world. Nearly 1,150 dengue case have been reported in Delhi in 2016.
Dengue fever is not contagious. It does not spread through direct contact with an infected person. It is transmitted by the bite of mosquitoes carrying the dengue virus from the infected person to the healthy person. ( To know about dengue fever click here http://www.medindia.net/health-infographics/dengue-fever.htm).
Female mosquitoes mainly of the species Aedes aegypti are the dengue carriers. Dengue virus is most active during the early morning and late afternoon.These mosquitoes bite during the day hours.
Dengue virus belongs to the family Flaviviridae of the genus Flavivirus and can be typically divided into four viral serotypes, DEN -1, DEN - 2, DEN - 3, DEN -4 they are closely related, but differ in their antigens.
There is no cure for dengue fever, however it can be prevented. A person affected with dengue fever is recommended not to take aspirin. Dengue fever is caused by the virus and hence cannot be cured by an antibiotic drug.
Interestingly, papaya leaves extract helps increase the platelet count and has been found to be useful in the treatment of dengue fever.
Dengvaxia, the world’s first dengue vaccine has been approved in Mexico. Dengue vaccine is advised to be taken only if a person has previously been infected by the dengue virus.
Ways to Prevent Dengue