CDC warns tourists of PUERTO RICO’s first locally acquired case of ZIKA VIRUS ~ HAWAII reports largest outbreak of DENGUE FEVER since statehood


Puerto Rico 01/02/16 by Sandee LaMotte – Health officials in Puerto Rico reported the island’s first case of Zika, a mosquito-borne virus recently linked to the rise of a serious neurological disorder among newborns in Brazil. “There is no reason for alarm, and the public should continue to take commonsense steps to avoid mosquito bites,” Puerto Rican Congressman Pedro Pierluisi said in a statement on Thursday. He added that he expects experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to visit the island in early January to educate local physicians to “properly diagnose and treat the virus.” The CDC has issued a warning to tourists traveling to Puerto Rico and other affected areas, asking them to protect themselves from the mosquitoes that spread the virus — especially pregnant women. The Aedes aegypti mosquito thrives in tropical climates and typically lives around buildings in urban areas. It is known to bite aggressively during the day, but can also attack at night, both indoors and out. It’s the same mosquito that can carry yellow fever, dengue fever and chikungunya. There is no vaccine to prevent Zika, and once infected there is no medicine to treat the virus. Symptoms typically include fever, rash, joint pain, and the red eyes of conjunctivitis. They’re usually mild, and can last up to a week. Other symptoms can include muscle pain, headache, pain behind the eyes and vomiting. Symptoms typically begin three to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. – for complete article see

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Hawaii 01/01/16 Health officials identified seven new cases of dengue fever on Friday, bringing the total number of cases to 202. As many as 13 of the confirmed cases are potentially infectious to mosquitoes. All others are no longer infectious. Of the total confirmed cases, 182 are Hawaii Island residents and 20 are visitors; 38 have been children. As of Friday, a total of 765 reported potential cases have been excluded based on test results and/or not meeting case criteria. The outbreak, which started Sept. 11, is now the largest since statehood. The second-largest outbreak was in 2001, and included 122 confirmed cases were reported. Dengue fever is transmitted to humans when they are bit by infected mosquitoes. The symptoms usually include a sudden onset of fever, severe headaches, rash and eye, joint and muscle pain.  No other locally-acquired dengue fever cases have been reported on any other islands. – See


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