Dengue fever outbreak hits Costa Rica

April 10, 2013

Health officials in Costa Rica said an outbreak of dengue fever has sickened 7,000 people, with many cases occurring in some of this Central American country's most popular tourist areas.

The incidence of illness represents a three-fold increase over this time a year ago, according to Maria Villalta, medical director of national Social Security office, which has been tracking the outbreak.

Most of the cases have been reported along Costa Rica's Pacific Coast, an area popular with foreign tourists. Officials said about 2,500 cases of dengue have been reported there—eight times more than last year.

Health authorities said they have been baffled by this recent outbreak, which has occurred despite a spate of unusually dry weather. The mosquitoes which carry dengue usually proliferate in times of heavy rain.

Dengue affects between 50 and 100 million people in the tropics and subtropics each year, resulting in fever, muscle and joint ache.

The disease is caused by four strains of virus that are spread by the aegypti. There is no vaccine, so in the region have been trying to stamp it out by focusing on .

The illness can be fatal, developing into hemorrhagic fever which can lead to shock and internal bleeding.

Related Stories

Brazil to breed GM mosquitoes to combat dengue

July 10, 2012

Brazil said Monday it will breed huge numbers of genetically modified mosquitoes to help stop the spread of dengue fever, an illness that has already struck nearly 500,000 people this year nationwide.

Cuba issues warning about dengue mosquitos

August 16, 2012

Cuban health officials warned Thursday about an increased number of mosquitoes in the country's urban areas that can spread diseases such as dengue fever.

Two dengue cases confirmed on Portuguese Atlantic island

October 4, 2012

Portuguese health authorities on Thursday reported two cases of full-blown mosquito-borne dengue on the popular tourist archipelago of Madeira and said another 22 people were suspected of carrying the virus that causes the ...

Recommended for you

Experimental MERS vaccine shows promise in animal studies

July 28, 2015

A two-step regimen of experimental vaccines against Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) prompted immune responses in mice and rhesus macaques, report National Institutes of Health scientists who designed the vaccines. ...

Can social isolation fuel epidemics?

July 21, 2015

Conventional wisdom has it that the more people stay within their own social groups and avoid others, the less likely it is small disease outbreaks turn into full-blown epidemics. But the conventional wisdom is wrong, according ...

Lack of knowledge on animal disease leaves humans at risk

July 20, 2015

Researchers from the University of Sydney have painted the most detailed picture to date of major infectious diseases shared between wildlife and livestock, and found a huge gap in knowledge about diseases which could spread ...

IBD genetically similar in Europeans and non-Europeans

July 20, 2015

The first genetic study of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) to include individuals from diverse populations has shown that the regions of the genome underlying the disease are consistent around the world. This study, conducted ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.