Dengue fever is a virus-caused disease that is spread by mosquitoes.
O’nyong-nyong fever; Dengue-like disease; Breakbone fever
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Dengue fever is caused by one of four different but related viruses. It is spread by the bite of mosquitoes, most commonly the mosquito Aedes aegypti, which is found in tropic and subtropic regions. This area includes parts of:
Indonesian archipelago into northeastern Australia
South and Central America
Some parts of the Caribbean
Dengue fever is being seen more often in world travelers.
Dengue fever should not be confused with
Dengue fever begins with a sudden high fever, often as high as 104 – 105 degrees Fahrenheit, 4 to 7 days after the infection.
A flat, red rash may appear over most of the body 2 to 5 days after the fever starts. A second rash, which looks like the
Other symptoms include:
- Headache (especially behind the eyes)
Joint aches Muscle aches
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Sore throat
- Nasal stuffiness
Signs and tests
Tests that may be done to diagnose this condition include:
Antibody titerfor dengue virus types
Complete blood count (
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for dengue virus types
Liver function tests
There is no specific treatment for dengue fever. You will need fluids if there are signs of
Avoid taking aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), and naproxen (Aleve). They may increase bleeding problems.
The condition generally lasts a week or more. Although uncomfortable, dengue fever is not deadly. People with the condition should fully recover.
- Severe dehydration
Calling your health care provider
Call your health care provider if you have traveled in an area where dengue fever is known to occur and have developed symptoms of the disease.
Clothing, mosquito repellent, and netting can help reduce exposure to mosquitoes. Traveling during periods of minimal mosquito activity can also be helpful.
Mosquito abatement programs may reduce the risk of infection.