Costa Rican authorities have announced that a total of 5338 cases of dengue have been recorded nationwide as of October. This is a significant rise in the country over last year, as an epidemic has hit all of Latin America in 2019. The 2019 case numbers mark an increase of 185 percent over last year. The number of fatalities was not immediately available.
Further spread of the disease is possible in the coming weeks.
Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne disease found mostly in urban and semi-urban areas. Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle and joint pain, fatigue, nausea, and rash. In a small number of cases, the potentially deadly dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) may develop, resulting in internal bleeding, enlargement of the liver, and high fever.
Individuals present in Costa Rica are advised to take measures to protect themselves from mosquito bites (e.g. by wearing covering clothing, using insect repellent, and sleeping in a screened-in or air-conditioned room) and to eliminate possible mosquito breeding grounds on their properties (e.g. small pockets of fresh water, such as rainwater that has collected in cans, bottles, tires, flower pots, clogged gutters, etc.).
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