Surge in dengue fever hits Bangladesh « Khabarhub
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Surge in dengue fever hits Bangladesh

27 August 2023  

Time taken to read : 3 Minute

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DHAKA: Health authorities in Bangladesh are wrestling with a surge in dengue fever cases as monsoon rains batter the densely populated country.

According to a World Health Organization report issued this month, “The higher incidence of dengue is taking place in the context of an unusual episodic amount of rainfall, combined with high temperatures and high humidity, which have resulted in an increased mosquito population throughout Bangladesh.”

Almost 90,000 cases of the mosquito-borne viral illness had been reported his year through Aug. 15, according to government figures.

Researchers and public health experts say the true numbers are much higher. By mid-August, at least 426 people – 81 of whom were age 18 or younger – had died of the fever, according to the Directorate General of Health Services, making this the deadliest year since the first recorded epidemic in 2000.

There are four strains of dengue, including the most life-threatening, hemorrhagic dengue. However, only patients with severe symptoms end up in hospitals, where the government collects data.

Last year, 62,098 dengue cases were recorded in Bangladesh, with 281 deaths.

The dengue virus is transmitted through the bite of infected female Aedes mosquitoes, which also transmit chikungunya, yellow fever and Zika infection and is a recurring problem in Bangladesh during the monsoon season. However, this year’s outbreak has been particularly severe, with the number of cases skyrocketing across urban and rural areas alike.

“We have noticed the disease has changed its characteristics, and so do the mosquitos too. They’ve adapted and become more stronger and prevalent. And now we see that dengue is not an ‘urban,’ problem anymore, the government database now records cases from every corner of the country,” Dr. M.H. Chowdhury Lenin, a physician and public health expert told VOA.

According to Lenin, “Dengue has been present in Bangladesh for over two decades now, and as we now know, dengue mosquitoes had mutations and they are now resistant to the usual insecticide or repellents that we use. So our existing measures are unable to curb the spread of the Aedes mosquitoes.”


Publish Date : 27 August 2023 07:50 AM

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