Dengue fever spreads in Bahamas

Nov. 14, 2003 at 10:56 AM
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NASSAU, Bahamas, Nov. 14 (UPI) -- Dengue fever has killed one person and 25 others are confirmed to have the mosquito-borne disease in the Bahamas, a report said Friday.

Another 130 likely cases have been reported on the island, the Nassau Guardian said.

Dengue fever is a viral illness caused by the aedes agypti mosquito, which bites mostly around dawn and dusk. Symptoms include fever, intense headache, eye pain, rash, joint pain, muscle weakness and sometimes bleeding disorders.

Minister of Health Marcus Bethel said the person who died was diagnosed with the most dangerous form of dengue fever known as hemorrhagic dengue fever. The less dangerous form of the illness, making up 99 percent of all cases, is simply referred to as dengue fever.

There is no treatment for dengue fever and doctors recommend people exhibiting symptoms rest to speed recovery and avoid taking aspirin, which tends to worsen the symptoms.

The last outbreak of dengue fever in the Bahamas occurred in 1998, where more than 300 people were infected.

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