Dengue has been designated a major international public health problem by the World Health Organization (WHO). It is endemic in most tropical and sub-tropical countries, which are also popular tourist destinations. Travellers are not only at significant risk of acquiring dengue but they also contribute to its spread to non-endemic regions. Furthermore, they may serve as sentinels to alert the international community to epidemics in dengue-endemic regions. GeoSentinel, a global surveillance network, monitors all travel-related illnesses and estimates that dengue accounts for 2% of all illness in travellers returning from dengue-endemic regions. In fact, in travellers returning from South-east Asia, dengue is now a more frequent cause of febrile illness than malaria. Dengue-infected travellers returning home to countries where the vector exists can place the local population at risk of further spread of the disease with subsequent autochthonous cycles of infection. The true incidence of dengue amongst travellers may be underestimated because of variability in reporting requirements in different countries and under-diagnosis owing to the non-specific clinical presentation of the disease. Risk factors for acquiring dengue include duration of stay, season of travel and epidemic activity at the destination. Any pre-travel advice on the risks of developing dengue infections should consider these factors.
Dengue; Travellers; GeoSentinel; Autochthonous spread; Sentinel surveillance
Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral disease that is a major public health problem worldwide. In 2004, the Pediatric Dengue Cohort Study was established in Managua, Nicaragua, to study the natural history and transmission of dengue in children. Here, the authors describe the study design, methods, and results from 2004 to 2008. Initially, 3,721 children 2–9 years of age were recruited through door-to-door visits. Each year, new children aged 2 years are enrolled in the study to maintain the age structure. Children are provided with medical care through the study, and data from each medical visit are recorded on systematic study forms. All participants presenting with suspected dengue or undifferentiated fever are tested for dengue by virologic, serologic, and molecular biologic assays. Yearly blood samples are collected to detect inapparent dengue virus infections. Numerous information and communications technologies are used to manage study data, track samples, and maintain quality control, including personal data assistants, barcodes, global information systems, and fingerprint scans. Close collaboration with the Nicaraguan Ministry of Health and use of almost entirely local staff are essential components for success. This study is providing critical data on the epidemiology and transmission of dengue in the Americas needed for future vaccine trials.
Central America; cohort studies; dengue; information systems; methods; Nicaragua
Autochthonous dengue infections were last reported in Hawaii in 1944. In September 2001, the Hawaii Department of Health was notified of an unusual febrile illness in a resident with no travel history; dengue fever was confirmed. During the investigation, 1,644 persons with locally acquired denguelike illness were evaluated, and 122 (7%) laboratory-positive dengue infections were identified; dengue virus serotype 1 was isolated from 15 patients. No cases of dengue hemorrhagic fever or shock syndrome were reported. In 3 instances autochthonous infections were linked to a person who reported denguelike illness after travel to French Polynesia. Phylogenetic analyses showed the Hawaiian isolates were closely associated with contemporaneous isolates from Tahiti. Aedes albopictus was present in all communities surveyed on Oahu, Maui, Molokai, and Kauai; no Ae. aegypti were found. This outbreak underscores the importance of maintaining surveillance and control of potential disease vectors even in the absence of an imminent disease threat.
Arboviruses; dengue fever; emerging infectious diseases; hemorrhagic fever; vector-borne diseases
Labor flow and travelers are important factors contributing to the spread of Dengue virus infection and chikungunya fever. Bali Province of Indonesia, a popular resort and tourist destination, has these factors and suffers from mosquito-borne infectious diseases. Using area study approach, a series of fieldwork was conducted in Bali to obtain up-to-date primary disease data, to learn more about public health measures, and to interview health officers, hotel personnel, and other resource persons. The national data including information on two other provinces were obtained for comparison. The health ministry reported 5,810 and 11,697 cases of dengue hemorrhagic fever in Bali in 2009 and 2010, respectively. Moreover, two densely populated tourist areas and one district have shown a particularly high incidence and sharp increases in 2010. Cases of chikungunya fever reported in Bali more than doubled in 2010 from the previous year. Our findings suggest that Bali can benefit from a significant reduction in vector populations and dissemination of disease preventive knowledge among both local residents and foreign visitors. This will require a concerted and trans-border approach, which may prove difficult in the province.
mosquito-borne infectious disease; tourism; population movements; vector control; Bali
Europeans represent the majority of international travellers and clinicians encountering returned patients have an essential role in recognizing, and communicating travel-associated public health risks.
To investigate the morbidity of travel associated infectious diseases in European travellers, we analysed diagnoses with demographic, clinical and travel-related predictors of disease, in 6957 ill returned travellers who presented in 2008 to EuroTravNet centres with a presumed travel associated condition.
Gastro-intestinal (GI) diseases accounted for 33% of illnesses, followed by febrile systemic illnesses (20%), dermatological conditions (12%) and respiratory illnesses (8%). There were 3 deaths recorded; a sepsis caused by Escherichia coli pyelonephritis, a dengue shock syndrome and a Plasmodium falciparum malaria.
GI conditions included bacterial acute diarrhea (6.9%), as well as giardiasis and amebasis (2.3%). Among febrile systemic illnesses with identified pathogens, malaria (5.4%) accounted for most cases followed by dengue (1.9%) and others including chikungunya, rickettsial diseases, leptospirosis, brucellosis, Epstein Barr virus infections, tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) and viral hepatitis. Dermatological conditions were dominated by bacterial infections, arthropod bites, cutaneous larva migrans and animal bites requiring rabies post-exposure prophylaxis and also leishmaniasis, myasis, tungiasis and one case of leprosy. Respiratory illness included 112 cases of tuberculosis including cases of multi-drug resistant or extensively drug resistant tuberculosis, 104 cases of influenza like illness, and 5 cases of Legionnaires disease. Sexually transmitted infections (STI) accounted for 0.6% of total diagnoses and included HIV infection and syphilis. A total of 165 cases of potentially vaccine preventable diseases were reported. Purpose of travel and destination specific risk factors was identified for several diagnoses such as Chagas disease in immigrant travellers from South America and P. falciparum malaria in immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa. Travel within Europe was also associated with health risks with distinctive profiles for Eastern and Western Europe.
In 2008, a broad spectrum of travel associated diseases were diagnosed at EuroTravNet core sites. Diagnoses varied according to regions visited by ill travellers. The spectrum of travel associated morbidity also shows that there is a need to dispel the misconception that travel, close to home, in Europe, is without significant health risk.
Background & objectives:
Dengue is a major health problem in many parts of India and its neighbouring countries. Dengue cases have not been reported from Manipur, a northeastern State of India till 2007. But, the sudden outbreak of fever with febrile illness during 2007 and 2008, suspected to be dengue/dengue haemorrhagic fever was investigated to detect the causative agent. Potential impact of climatic variables on dengue transmission has been documented and hence the association between climatic factors, entomological parameters and dengue cases was also analysed.
Forty two and 16 blood samples were collected from patients suspected to have dengue infection in the year 2007 and 2008, respectively. Viral RNA was extracted from serum samples and subjected to multiplex one step RT-PCR assay. Dengue specific amplicons were sequenced and phylogenetic analysis was carried out. Multiyear trend analysis and ‘t’ test were performed for the comparison of different meteorological variables between the years 2000-2004 and 2005-2008.
The aetiological agent was found to be DENV-2 and the phylogenetic analysis showed that the isolate was similar to that of Cambodian isolate. There was a significant difference in minimum temperature (P<0.05), Relative humidity - morning hours (P<0.001), relative humanity - afternoon hours (P<0.01) and cumulative precipitation (P< 0.05) between the years 2000-2004 and 2005-2008.
Interpretation & conclusions:
The sudden outbreak of dengue fever in Manipur State occurred was possibly due to the increased temperature, relative humidity and decrease in cumulative precipitation. These climatic factors would have contributed to the Aedes mosquito abundance and increased virus transmission. Proper diseases surveillance system integrated with meteorological warning system and management of vector breeding sites will prevent such outbreaks in future.
Climatic variables; dengue cases; dengue outbreak; DENV-2; India; Manipur
Dengue vaccines are now in late-stage development, and evaluation and robust estimates of dengue disease burden are needed to facilitate further development and introduction. In Cambodia, the national dengue case-definition only allows reporting of children less than 16 years of age, and little is known about dengue burden in rural areas and among older persons. To estimate the true burden of dengue in the largest province of Cambodia, Kampong Cham, we conducted community-based active dengue fever surveillance among the 0-to-19–year age group in rural villages and urban areas during 2006–2008.
Methods and Findings
Active surveillance for febrile illness was conducted in 32 villages and 10 urban areas by mothers trained to use digital thermometers combined with weekly home visits to identify persons with fever. An investigation team visited families with febrile persons to obtain informed consent for participation in the follow-up study, which included collection of personal data and blood specimens. Dengue-related febrile illness was defined using molecular and serological testing of paired acute and convalescent blood samples. Over the three years of surveillance, 6,121 fever episodes were identified with 736 laboratory-confirmed dengue virus (DENV) infections for incidences of 13.4–57.8/1,000 person-seasons. Average incidence was highest among children less than 7 years of age (41.1/1,000 person-seasons) and lowest among the 16-to-19–year age group (11.3/1,000 person-seasons). The distribution of dengue was highly focal, with incidence rates in villages and urban areas ranging from 1.5–211.5/1,000 person-seasons (median 36.5). During a DENV-3 outbreak in 2007, rural areas were affected more than urban areas (incidence 71 vs. 17/1,000 person-seasons, p<0.001).
The large-scale active surveillance study for dengue fever in Cambodia found a higher disease incidence than reported to the national surveillance system, particularly in preschool children and that disease incidence was high in both rural and urban areas. It also confirmed the previously observed focal nature of dengue virus transmission.
Dengue is a major public health problem in South-East Asia. Several dengue vaccine candidates are now in late-stage development and are being evaluated in clinical trials. Accurate estimates of true dengue disease burden will become an important factor in the public-health decision-making process for endemic countries once safe and effective vaccines become available. However, estimates of the true disease incidence are difficult to make, because national surveillance systems suffer from disease under-recognition and reporting. Dengue is mainly reported among children, and in some countries, such as Cambodia, the national case definition only includes hospitalized children. This study used active, community-based surveillance of febrile illness coupled with laboratory testing for DENV infection to identify cases of dengue fever in rural and urban populations. We found a high burden of dengue in young children and late adolescents in both rural and urban communities at a magnitude greater than previously described. The study also confirmed the previously observed focal nature of dengue virus transmission.
The dengue viruses (DENV) are endemic in the tropical and sub-tropical countries and cause the most common arthropod-borne viral disease in humans. Travelers visiting endemic areas may both acquire and spread DENV infections, and this is the reason why prevention of mosquito bites is of crucial importance. Dengue fever (DF) has become the most common cause for tropical fever in Swedish tourists. Swedish data from 1995 to 2010 show that the number of DF cases has increased since the beginning of 2000; partly due to improved diagnostics based on IgM detection, and partly due to an increase in the number of tourists traveling to, and between, endemic areas. Young adults aged 20–29 are mostly affected, and epidemiological data indicate increased incidence rates from 2008 onwards. Our data pose a call for attention when traveling to DENV endemic areas as well as an increased awareness among physicians when treating returning travelers.
dengue virus; dengue fever; travel medicine; emerging infectious diseases
Dengue virus infection causes a spectrum of clinical manifestations, usually classified according to the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines into dengue fever (DF) and dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF). Its ability to categorize severe dengue illness has recently been questioned.
We evaluated dengue case definitions in a prospective study at a pediatric hospital in Bangkok from 1994-2005. One thousand and thirteen children were enrolled within the first three days of fever and followed with standardized data collection. Cases were classified based on application of the strict WHO criteria. All dengue virus infections were laboratory confirmed. We retrospectively grouped patients based on whether they received significant intervention based on the fluid replacement and/or requirements for blood transfusion.
Fifty eight percent (85/150), 15% (40/264), and 12% (73/599) of DHF, DF and other febrile illnesses (OFI) cases, respectively, received significant intervention. Sixty-eight percent of dengue cases requiring intervention met strict WHO criteria for DHF. In contrast, only 1% of OFI cases met WHO criteria for DHF. Plasma leakage and thrombocytopenia were the two components contributing to the specificity of the WHO case definition and identified dengue cases that required intervention. Hemorrhagic tendency did not reliably differentiate DF and DHF. In DF cases, thrombocytopenia and bleeding were associated with severity.
Dengue illness is heterogeneous in severity, and severe clinical features occurred in patients that were not characterized as DHF. The WHO case definition of DHF demonstrates 62% sensitivity and 92% specificity in identifying dengue illness requiring intervention without the need for laboratory confirmation of dengue virus infection in endemic areas.
dengue hemorrhagic fever; dengue fever; WHO clinical guidelines; plasma leakage; clinical severity
To date, no indigenous dengue virus (DENV) transmissions have been reported in Korea. However, imported dengue infections have been diagnosed in travelers returning from endemic areas. This study presents the first virological evidence of travel-associated DENV importation into South Korea.
From January 2004 to June 2006, a total of 278 serum samples from 245 patients with suspected dengue fever were tested using the Panbio Dengue Duo IgM/IgG Rapid Strip Test. We selected 11 of the early symptomatic-phase sera that were negative for IgM and retrospectively studied them by virus isolation and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction.
All 11 serum samples were found to be DENV positive by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and viruses were successfully isolated from seven of the 11 serum samples. All the isolates were identified as DENV serotype-1.
We successfully isolated seven DENV serotype-1 strains for the first time in South Korea from imported infections. Considering that the vector mosquito, Aedes albopictus, already exists in South Korea, we propose that a vector surveillance program for dengue is urgently needed.
Dengue virus; diagnosis; Korea; reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction
Longitudinal data examining travel-associated illness patterns are lacking. To address this need and determine trends and clusters in travel-related illness, we examined data for 2000–2010, prospectively collected for 42,223 ill travelers by 18 GeoSentinel sites. The most common destinations from which ill travelers returned were sub-Saharan Africa (26%), Southeast Asia (17%), south-central Asia (15%), and South America (10%). The proportion who traveled for tourism decreased significantly, and the proportion who traveled to visit friends and relatives increased. Among travelers returning from malaria-endemic regions, the proportionate morbidity (PM) for malaria decreased; in contrast, the PM trends for enteric fever and dengue (excluding a 2002 peak) increased. Case clustering was detected for malaria (Africa 2000, 2007), dengue (Thailand 2002, India 2003), and enteric fever (Nepal 2009). This multisite longitudinal analysis highlights the utility of sentinel surveillance of travelers for contributing information on disease activity trends and an evidence base for travel medicine recommendations.
travel; trends; case clusters; illness; surveillance; VFRs; visiting friends and relatives
The aim of this study was to examine retrospective dengue-illness classification using only clinical laboratory data, without relying on X-ray, ultrasound, or percent hemoconcentration. We analyzed data from a study of children who presented with acute febrile illness to two hospitals in Thailand. Multivariable logistic regression models were used to distinguish: (1) dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) versus dengue fever (DF), (2) DHF versus DF + other febrile illness (OFI), (3) dengue versus OFI, and (4) severe dengue versus non-severe dengue + OFI. Data from the second hospital served as a validation set. There were 1,227 patients in the analysis. The sensitivity of the models ranged from 89.2% (dengue versus OFI) to 79.6% (DHF versus DF). The models showed high sensitivity in the validation dataset. These models could be used to calculate a probability and classify patients based on readily available clinical laboratory data, and they will need to be validated in other dengue-endemic regions.
Dengue fever (DF) is endemic in tropical and subtropical zones and the prevalence is increasing across South-east Asia, Africa, the Western Pacific and the Americas. In recent years, the spread of unplanned urbanisation, with associated substandard housing, overcrowding and deterioration in water, sewage and waste management systems, has created ideal conditions for increased transmission of the dengue virus in tropical urban centres. While dengue infection has traditionally been considered a paediatric disease, the age distribution of dengue has been rising and more cases have been observed in adolescents and adults. Furthermore, the development of tourism in the tropics has led to an increase in the number of tourists who become infected, most of whom are adults. Symptoms and risk factors for dengue haemorrhagic fever (DHF) and severe dengue differ between children and adults, with co-morbidities and incidence in more elderly patients associated with greater risk of mortality. Treatment options for DF and DHF in adults, as for children, centre round fluid replacement (either orally or intravenously, depending on severity) and antipyretics. Further data are needed on the optimal treatment of adult patients.
Dengue; Adults; Adolescents; DHF; Dengue haemorrhagic fever; Age
Diagnosis of dengue infection is easily and best accomplished by demonstration of specific IgM antibodies in blood. We analyzed retrospectively the dengue IgM seropositivity available for samples obtained over a period of 5 years (2006–2010) from patients with suspected dengue fever (DF)-like illness to investigate whether there was an overall increase in the dengue IgM prevalence over this period.
Blood samples were collected from patients with DF-like febrile illnesses attending the Pediatric, Medicine, and Fever clinics of a Government hospital, Delhi. A total of 8138 individuals (suspected dengue cases) obtained over 5 years were tested for dengue specific IgM antibodies. Year wise, month wise, and age wise data on geographic distribution and clinical manifestations were analyzed.
Of the 8138 samples, 1600 (19.66%) were positive for dengue specific IgM. The year 2006 had the highest number of reported cases, 761 (46.23%). In our study, the age group most commonly affected of all 5 years was 11–20 years. Out of the total 1600 cases admitted to the hospital between 2006 and 2010, 279 (58.9%) had DF, 178 (37.6%) had dengue hemorrhagic fever, and 16 (3.38%) had dengue shock syndrome. We found a high burden of dengue in young children and late adolescents in both rural and urban communities at a magnitude greater than previously described.
Interpretation and Conclusion:
We observed an increase in the dengue positive cases every alternate year, thereby indicating a possible role of herd immunity in northern India. We did not find a steady increase in the number of cases over 5 years. We found an increase in the number of positive cases in children and young adolescents.
Delhi; dengue infection; herd immunity
Climate change affects the survival and transmission of arthropod vectors as well as the development rates of vector-borne pathogens. Increased international travel is also an important factor in the spread of vector-borne diseases (VBDs) such as dengue, West Nile, yellow fever, chikungunya, and malaria. Dengue is the most important vector-borne viral disease. An estimated 2.5 billion people are at risk of infection in the world and there are approximately 50 million dengue infections and an estimated 500,000 individuals are hospitalized with dengue haemorrhagic fever annually. The Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) is one of the vectors of dengue virus, and populations already exist on Jeju Island, South Korea. Currently, colder winter temperatures kill off Asian tiger mosquito populations and there is no evidence of the mosquitos being vectors for the dengue virus in this location. However, dengue virus-bearing mosquito vectors can inflow to Jeju Island from endemic area such as Vietnam by increased international travel, and this mosquito vector's survival during colder winter months will likely occur due to the effects of climate change.
Methods and Results
In this section, we show the geographical distribution of medically important mosquito vectors such as Ae. albopictus, a vector of both dengue and chikungunya viruses; Culex pipiens, a vector of West Nile virus; and Anopheles sinensis, a vector of Plasmodium vivax, within Jeju Island, South Korea. We found a significant association between the mean temperature, amount of precipitation, and density of mosquitoes. The phylogenetic analyses show that an Ae. albopictus, collected in southern area of Jeju Island, was identical to specimens found in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, and not Nagasaki, Japan.
Our results suggest that mosquito vectors or virus-bearing vectors can transmit from epidemic regions of Southeast Asia to Jeju Island and can survive during colder winter months. Therefore, Jeju Island is no longer safe from vector borne diseases (VBDs) due to the effects of globalization and climate change, and we should immediately monitor regional climate change to identify newly emerging VBDs.
Dengue infection can be challenging to diagnose early in the course of infection before severe manifestations develop, but early diagnosis can improve patient outcomes and promote timely public health interventions. We developed age-based predictive models generated from 2 years of data from an enhanced dengue surveillance system in Puerto Rico. These models were internally validated and were able to differentiate dengue infection from other acute febrile illnesses with moderate accuracy. The accuracy of the models was greater than either the current World Health Organization case definition for dengue fever or a proposed modification to this definition, while requiring the collection of fewer data. In young children, thrombocytopenia and the absence of cough were associated with dengue infection; for adults, rash, leucopenia, and the absence of sore throat were associated with dengue infection; in all age groups, retro-orbital pain was associated with dengue infection.
Background: Dengue has been known to be endemic in India for over two centuries. There is a need to assess the magnitude of dengue virus establishment in the state of Rajasthan. A surveillance study was conducted to analyze dengue seropositivity among patients with clinical suspicion of dengue fever like illness, who presented to or were admitted at a tertiary care private hospital at Jaipur.
Methods: Serum samples from 2169 suspected dengue cases (1356 males and 813 females) were received in the Serology lab over the four year study period (2008-2011). The samples were subjected to a rapid immuno-chromatography assay with differential detection of IgM and IgG antibodies. A primary dengue infection was defined by a positive IgM band and a negative IgG band, whereas a secondary infection was defined by a positive Ig G band with or without an IgM band.
Result: Among the 2169 patients who were screened; 18.99% (412) were dengue specific IgM positive cases. 64. 49% (1399) cases were negative for dengue specific antibodies, 5.67% (123) were primary dengue cases, and 23.51% (510) were total secondary dengue cases. During the study period, the Dengue IgM seropositivity was highest in the year 2009 and was lowest in the year 2011. Most of the cases occurred in the post-monsoon season, with a peak in the month of October, each year.
Conclusion: A detailed and continuous epidemiological surveillance is required, for monitoring the incrusion and spread of dengue viruses. This will help in undertaking and implementing effective control and management strategies.
Dengue; Serosurveillance; Jaipur
Dengue is an acute febrile illness caused by four mosquito-borne dengue viruses (DENV-1 to -4) that are endemic throughout the tropics. After returning from a 1-week missionary trip to Haiti in October of 2010, 5 of 28 (18%) travelers were hospitalized for dengue-like illness. All travelers were invited to submit serum specimens and complete questionnaires on pre-travel preparations, mosquito avoidance practices, and activities during travel. DENV infection was confirmed in seven (25%) travelers, including all travelers that were hospitalized. Viral sequencing revealed closest homology to a 2007 DENV-1 isolate from the Dominican Republic. Although most (88%) travelers had a pre-travel healthcare visit, only one-quarter knew that dengue is a risk in Haiti, and one-quarter regularly used insect repellent. This report confirms recent DENV transmission in Haiti. Travelers to DENV-endemic areas should receive dengue education during pre-travel health consultations, follow mosquito avoidance recommendations, and seek medical care for febrile illness during or after travel.
Elevation of aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) is prominent in acute dengue illness. The World Health Organization (WHO) 2009 dengue guidelines defined AST or ALT≥1000 units/liter (U/L) as a criterion for severe dengue. We aimed to assess the clinical relevance and discriminatory value of AST or ALT for dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) and severe dengue.
We retrospectively studied and classified polymerase chain reaction positive dengue patients from 2006 to 2008 treated at Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore according to WHO 1997 and 2009 criteria for dengue severity. Of 690 dengue patients, 31% had DHF and 24% severe dengue. Elevated AST and ALT occurred in 86% and 46%, respectively. Seven had AST or ALT≥1000 U/L. None had acute liver failure but one patient died. Median AST and ALT values were significantly higher with increasing dengue severity by both WHO 1997 and 2009 criteria. However, they were poorly discriminatory between non-severe and severe dengue (e.g., AST area under the receiver operating characteristic [ROC] curve = 0.62; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.57–0.67) and between dengue fever (DF) and DHF (AST area under the ROC curve = 0.56; 95% CI: 0.52–0.61). There was significant overlap in AST and ALT values among patients with dengue with or without warning signs and severe dengue, and between those with DF and DHF.
Although aminotransferase levels increased in conjunction with dengue severity, AST or ALT values did not discriminate between DF and DHF or non-severe and severe dengue.
Dengue is a global public health problem, as the incidence of the disease has reached hyperendemic proportions in recent decades. Infection with dengue can cause acute, febrile illness or severe disease, which can lead to plasma leakage, bleeding, and organ impairment. One of the most prominent clinical characteristics of dengue patients is increased aspartate and alanine aminotransferase liver enzyme levels. The significance of this is uncertain, as it is transient in the majority of cases, and most patients recover uneventfully without liver damage. In this study, we characterized this phenomenon in the context of dengue severity and found that, although liver enzyme levels increased concurrently with dengue severity, they could not sufficiently discriminate between dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever or between non-severe and severe dengue. Therefore clinicians may need to use other parameters to distinguish dengue severity in patients during early illness.
The objective of this study was to correlate laboratory tests during the evolution of dengue fever, comparing frequencies between the different clinical forms in order to use test results to predict the severity of the disease.
This is an observational, descriptive and retrospective study of 154 patients with clinical and serological diagnoses of dengue fever who, in the period from January to May 2008, were admitted in a tertiary state hospital in the city of Fortaleza that is a referral center for infectious diseases. The patients were allocated to two groups according to age: under 15 years old (n = 66) and 15 years or older (n = 88). The tests analyzed were blood count, platelet count, and serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) concentrations.
Thrombocytopenia and elevated transaminases were observed in patients with classic dengue fever. The main laboratory abnormalities found in dengue hemorrhagic fever were thrombocytopenia, hemoconcentration and elevated transaminases, similar to severe dengue with the exception of hemoconcentration. Most laboratory abnormalities started on the 3rd day but were more evident on the 5th day with restoration of values by the 11th day; this was more prominent in under 15-year-olds and with the more severe clinical forms.
These results are relevant in assessing the disease because they can be used as markers for more severe forms and can help by enabling the adaptation of the therapeutic conduct to the needs of individual patients.
Dengue/blood; Dengue hemorrhagic fever/diagnosis; Dengue virus; Prognosis; Clinical laboratory techniques; Hematologic tests
The World health Organization (WHO) declares dengue and dengue hemorrhagic fever to be endemic in South Asia. Despite the magnitude of problem, no documented evidence exists in Pakistan which reveals the awareness and practices of the country's adult population regarding dengue fever, its spread, symptoms, treatment and prevention. This study was conducted to assess the level of knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding dengue fever in people visiting tertiary care hospitals in Karachi, Pakistan.
A cross-sectional pilot study was conducted among people visiting tertiary care hospitals in Karachi. Through convenience sampling, a pre-tested and structured questionnaire was administered through a face-to-face unprompted interview with 447 visitors. Knowledge was recorded on a scale of 1–3.
About 89.9% of individuals interviewed had heard of dengue fever. Sufficient knowledge about dengue was found to be in 38.5% of the sample, with 66% of these in Aga Khan University Hospital and 33% in Civil Hospital Karachi. Literate individuals were relatively more well-informed about dengue fever as compared to the illiterate people (p<0.001). Knowledge based upon preventive measures was found to be predominantly focused towards prevention of mosquito bites (78.3%) rather than eradication of mosquito population (17.3%). Use of anti- mosquito spray was the most prevalent (48.1%) preventive measure. Television was considered as the most important and useful source of information on the disease.
Adult population of Karachi has adequate knowledge related to the disease ‘dengue’ on isolated aspects, but the overall prevalence of ‘sufficient knowledge’ based on our criteria is poor. We demonstrated adequate prevalence of preventive practices against the disease. Further studies correlating the association between knowledge and its effectiveness against dengue will be helpful in demonstrating the implications of awareness campaigns.
Dengue fever is an acute viral disease, which usually presents as a mild febrile illness. Patients with severe disease present with dengue haemorrhagic fever or dengue toxic shock syndrome. Rarely, it presents with abdominal symptoms mimicking acute appendicitis. We present a case of a male patient presenting with right iliac fossa pain and suspected acute appendicitis that was later diagnosed with dengue fever following a negative appendicectomy.
PRESENTATION OF CASE
A 13-year old male patient presented with fever, localized right-sided abdominal pain and vomiting. Abdominal ultrasound was not helpful and appendicectomy was performed due to worsening abdominal signs and an elevated temperature. A normal appendix with enlarged mesenteric nodes was found at surgery. Complete blood count showed thrombocytopenia with leucopenia. Dengue fever was now suspected and confirmed by IgM enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay against dengue virus.
This unusual presentation of dengue fever mimicking acute appendicitis should be suspected during viral outbreaks and in patients with atypical symptoms and cytopenias on blood evaluation in order to prevent unnecessary surgery.
This case highlights the occurrence of abdominal symptoms and complications that may accompany dengue fever. Early recognition of dengue fever mimicking acute appendicitis will avoid non-therapeutic operation and the diagnosis may be aided by blood investigations indicating a leucopenia, which is uncommon in patients with suppurative acute appendicitis.
Dengue fever; Acute appendicitis; Acute abdomen; Leucopenia
Six assays were evaluated in this study to determine their suitability for the diagnosis of acute dengue infection using samples from 259 Sri Lankan patients with acute fevers (99 confirmed dengue cases and 160 patients with other confirmed acute febrile illnesses): (i) the Merlin dengue fever IgG & IgM combo device (Merlin), (ii) the Standard Diagnostics Dengue Duo nonstructural 1 (NS1) antigen and IgG/IgM combo device (Standard Diagnostics, South Korea), (iii) the Biosynex Immunoquick dengue fever IgG and IgM (Biosynex, France) assay, (iv) the Bio-Rad NS1 antigen strip (Bio-Rad, France), (v) the Panbio Dengue Duo IgG/IgM Cassette (Inverness, Australia), and (vi) the Panbio dengue NS1 antigen strip (Inverness, Australia). The median number of days of fever prior to admission sample collection was 5 days (interquartile range, 3 to 7 days). Sensitivity and specificity of the NS1 antigen tests ranged from 49 to 59% and from 93 to 99%, respectively, and sensitivity and sensitivity of the IgM antibody test ranged from 71 to 80% and from 46 to 90%, respectively. Combining the NS1 antigen and IgM antibody results from the Standard Diagnostics Dengue Duo test gave the best compromise of sensitivity and specificity (93% and 89%, respectively) and provided the best sensitivity in patients presenting at different times after fever onset. The Merlin IgM/IgG antibody tests correctly classified 64% and 86% of the primary and secondary dengue infection cases, respectively, and the Standard Diagnostics IgM/IgG antibody tests correctly classified 71% and 83% of the primary and secondary dengue infection cases, respectively. This study provides strong evidence of the value of combining dengue antigen- and antibody-based test results in the rapid diagnostic test (RDT) format for the acute diagnosis of dengue.
Post-infectious cerebellitis is an acute form of inflammatory encephalitis mainly limited to the cerebellum. It is commonly found in children, especially after viral infections such as Epstein-Barr virus. Post-infectious cerebellitis presents with acute onset dysarthria and ataxia. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case report of post-infectious cerebellitis in a patient with both dengue and Epstein-Barr viral infection confirmed on serology.
A 43-year-old Sri Lankan Sinhala man presented with an acute febrile illness associated with thrombocytopenia. While being managed as uncomplicated dengue fever, our patient developed dysarthria, ataxia and cerebellar signs. Our patient's infectious disease screen was positive for both dengue and Epstein-Barr specific immunoglobulin M. A cerebrospinal fluid analysis was suggestive of viral meningoencephalitis while cerebrospinal fluid serology was positive for dengue immunoglobulin G. T2-weighted magnetic resonance images were consistent with post-viral cerebellitis. The patient was given full supportive care and he made an uneventful complete recovery.
There have been no previously reported cases of post-infectious cerebellitis associated with both Epstein-Barr and dengue viral infections confirmed by serology. Our patient's clinical features and findings on the imaging studies were consistent with post-viral cerebellitis. This report highlights the need to screen for other possible more common etiologies of a particular presentation before coming to a specific diagnosis based on initial findings. Uncomplicated cases of cerebellitis can be successfully managed with appropriate supportive measures with good prognosis, as in this case.
Mayaro virus is endemic in South America and sporadic outbreaks have been described. It causes a dengue-like febrile illness accompanied by severe and long-lasting polyarthralgias. Outside endemic regions, however, the disease is not well known and can be misdiagnosed as dengue. International travellers are at risk to acquire Mayaro virus and due to increased worldwide travel infectious disease specialists need to be aware of such rare clinical entities.
We report the first Mayaro virus infection imported into Germany. A 20-year-old woman developed fever, myalgia, maculopapular rash, and polyarthralgias following a 10-day trip in the Rurrenabaque region of Bolivia. Severe polyarthralgias persisted for 5 months and were treated with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Serological analysis demonstrated Mayaro virus-specific-IgM and -IgG antibodies two months after onset of symptoms. Except for CXCL8/IL-8 other proinflammatory chemokines and cytokines were unremarkable at this time.
Dissemination of knowledge on rare disease might improve patient management. Understanding the inherent features of Mayaro virus infection and how the virus interacts with its host are essential for optimal patient care and therapy.
Mayaro virus; Alphavirus; Persistent arthralgia; Inflammatory cytokines