Dengue Fever, Myths and Facts to Understand

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Usually in rainy season cases dengue fever increase. The population of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes will increase because the eggs will hatch when their habitat begins to be waterlogged. As a result, the mosquito population increases so that it can cause an increase in the transmission of dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF).

Here are the myths and facts about dengue fever that you need to know so as not to be misinformed.

Can dengue fever be transmitted through physical contact?
Dengue fever is caused by the dengue virus which is transmitted through bites Aedes mosquito aegypti. Internal medicine specialist dr. RA Adaninggar or familiarly called Ning said humans who are sick with dengue fever cannot transmit the virus directly to other humans through physical contact without a mosquito intermediary.

Is it true that people can only get dengue fever once in a lifetime?
There are four variants of dengue virus serotypes, namely DEN1, DEN2, DEN3, and DEN4. “Infection with one serotype will produce long-term immunity against that variant but does not provide protection against infection with a different variant,” Ning said via his Instagram account.

So, people can get more than one Dengue infection, even the second, third, and so on with different variants. “The immune reaction will be greater because there is a reaction” antibody dependent enhancement. Be careful with the second attack of dengue fever, and so on, ”Ning said.

Can only children get dengue fever?
All people of all ages have the same risk of developing dengue fever when exposed to the Aedes aegypti mosquito that carries the dengue virus. The risk of developing severe dengue fever is higher in:

– People who have had dengue before.
– People with weak immune systems such as the elderly, obese, and those with comorbidities

Is a fever accompanied by a nosebleed definitely DHF?
“Fever accompanied by bleeding can be caused by many viruses, not only the Dengue virus, which is called the Viral Hemorrhagic Fever disease group and is also mediated by animals such as mosquitoes, fleas, mice, monkeys, and others,” he explained.

He added that the general symptoms are very similar and difficult to distinguish. There are several tests that can differentiate but the treatment is relatively the same.

“What is important is monitoring the condition and early detection of signs of severe symptoms so that they can be handled properly,” he said.

Is fogging enough to prevent transmission of dengue fever?
Preventing the transmission of dengue fever is not enough just to eradicate adult mosquitoes by fogging but it is also important to eradicate mosquito eggs and larvae, namely puddles of water which often become nests.

In addition, maintaining immune health and preventing mosquito bites is one way to prevent infection, for example by using insect repellent, sleeping with mosquito nets, and avoiding places with a high risk of mosquito habitat.

Does dengue fever have to be hospitalized and take antibiotics?
“Dengue fever caused by a virus does not need treatment with antibiotics, the important thing is to ensure fluid intake and good nutrition,” he explained.

You also do not have to be hospitalized if the condition is mild. However, close supervision must be carried out because it can get worse after 3-5 days. Go to the hospital immediately if:

– Great nausea and vomiting
– Can’t eat and drink
– Fever goes down but hands are cold or blood pressure drops
– Heavy bleeding
– Platelets under 100,000

Is it true that drinking guava juice or dates can increase platelets quickly?
In dengue fever, as the disease progresses, platelets will indeed decrease due to the immune reaction and the direct influence of the virus. But in 7-10 days, according to the concept, viral diseases can heal by itself. Platelets will also rise on its own along with healing.

He explained that guava juice and dates have not been scientifically proven to be associated with a faster increase in platelets in men DBD. However, both contain many nutrients in the form of calories, vitamins, and minerals so that they can support adequate nutrition in dengue fever patients and can support the healing process.

Is it true that dengue fever patients should drink isotonic drinks?
Patients with dengue fever who can still eat and drink must have adequate fluid intake, which is around 6-8 glasses per day. This can be more when there is nausea and vomiting.

“All types of fluids can be consumed, but if there is nausea and vomiting, isotonic fluids may be consumed to replace lost water and electrolytes. Those who have nausea, have severe vomiting and can’t eat or drink may need intravenous fluids,” he explained.

Is it true that Covid-19 is often misdiagnosed with dengue fever and vice versa?
In this pandemic era, Covid-19 must always be considered as one of the causes of acute fever, just like dengue fever. In fact, the symptoms are very similar. Furthermore, Ning explained that distinguishing it from symptoms alone is so difficult that it requires other clues, for example:

– Having a fever along with family members at home accompanied by respiratory symptoms, possibly infected with Covid-19.

– There is a history of close contact with a person with Covid-19, the possibility of Covid-19 is greater.

– Positive PCR/Covid antigen swab, most likely Covid.

“Meanwhile, the above instructions plus the detection of Dengue antibodies (IgM and/or IgG) can indicate a concurrent infection between Covid and Dengue or false positive results for Dengue antibodies, so handling and monitoring for both must still be done so that they are more aware of the dangers of their respective severe conditions. ,” he explained.

Also read: Various Drinks are Good for Dengue Fever Patients

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