Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Fever Part Two

Just to prove my point about the ubiquitousness of Dengue fever in Puerto Rico, here is a PSA from Island TV that I found on Youtube. (see below for my post on the racist article in the NYTimes about the alarming increase in Dengue fever and other "exotic" mosquito borne ailments in Itatly)

UPDATE 1/11/07

This morning I saw on the CNN crawl statistics on the marked rise in cases of dengue in PR which the crawl described as a "US territory."

This is the article from AP:

World News
Puerto Rico's dengue fever outbreak last year worst in nearly a decade

© AP
2008-01-10 23:30:00 -

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) - Puerto Rico saw 11,000 cases of dengue last year, the fever's worst outbreak in the U.S. Caribbean territory in nearly a decade, a health official said Thursday.
Dengue, which is spread by mosquitoes, killed four adults and four children in Puerto Rico during 2007, state epidemiologist Enid Garcia said
in releasing the final tally for the year. The oldest victim was 80 and the youngest 5 months old.
«It wasn't the worst we've had, but it was a serious epidemic,» Garcia said in an interview with The Associated Press.
The 10,964 cases recorded for the year were the most in Puerto Rico since a 1998 outbreak that caused 17,000 cases and 19 deaths, Garcia said. A 1994 outbreak totaled 24,000 cases.
In one of the worst years for dengue in recent decades, Latin America and the Caribbean counted nearly 800,000 reported cases and nearly 250 deaths in 2007, according to the Pan American Health Organization. Final figures were not yet available.

There is no vaccine for the tropical virus, which generally causes fever, headaches and extreme joint and muscle pain, among other symptoms.
Once thought to have been nearly eliminated from Latin America, dengue has gained strength in the region since the early 1980s in part because tourism and migration are circulating four different strains, increasing the risk of multiple exposure and making it more likely an infection will develop into the severe hemorrhagic form of the virus.

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