During the World Cup, I wrote about dengue, since it’s endemic in Brazil. Every year, we get a handful of dengue cases reported in Arizona (4 last year) that are associated with travel to a country with dengue circulation, but for the first time, dengue is at our border. Over the last few weeks, locally transmitted cases of dengue have been reported near the Northern border area of Sonora, just south of Yuma. The transmission late this season means increases the potential for local transmission of Dengue in AZ next Summer, particularly in areas near the border.
Dengue is a viral illness spread by Aedes aegypti mosquitos. It typically causes high fever, severe headaches, pain behind the eyes, and muscle, bone, and joint pain. Because dengue is a spread through mosquitoes, you can prevent dengue the same way you would West Nile virus, and other mosquito-borne diseases. Basically…dump standing water from your property, and maintain intact screens on your doors and windows. We’re gathering additional resources for the public and physicians to become aware of the signs and symptoms of dengue, laboratory testing recommendations, and how to prevent local transmission of dengue in Arizona. This will be an important area of collaboration over the coming months through the Arizona Mexico Commission.