Published On: Mon, Sep 30th, 2013

Pakistan: More than 6,000 dengue fever cases reported in Swat district

The Swat district of Khyber Pakthunkhwa (KPK) province in Pakistan has reported a surge in dengue fever cases over the past six weeks, according to a World Health Organization EMBRO statement Sept. 29.

A female Aedes aegypti mosquito Image/CDC

A female Aedes aegypti mosquito

While dengue fever is endemic in Pakistan with seasonal rises in cases, the Surveillance, forecasting and response reports says, “As of 25 September 2013, a total of 6376 suspected cases, including 23 deaths (case–fatality rate 0.36%), were reported from this district since 7 August 2013.”

The National Institute of Health (NIH) in Islamabad reports identifying three sero types of dengue fever (DEN-1, DEN-2 and DEN-3) as the causative strain of this current outbreak.

The WHO also reports sporadic cases have also been reported from the provinces of Punjab, Sindh, and Balochistan.

However, there is some good news for the region.

A local official with the World Health Organization (WHO) said that with the onset of cooler autumn weather in the mountainous region, infections should decrease.

“The number of dengue cases is decreasing and the countdown has been started,” Doctor Qutbuddin Kakar, the WHO’s focal person for dengue, told AFP.

“We are expecting more visible decline in the coming days with the change in the temperature.”

Swat is a valley and an administrative district in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. It is the upper valley of the Swat River, which rises in the Hindu Kush range.

Dengue fever is an infectious disease carried by mosquitoes and caused by any of four related dengue viruses. This disease was once called called “break-bone fever” because it sometimes causes severe joint and muscle pain that feels like bones are breaking.

Dengue fever of multiple types is found in most countries of the tropics and subtropics particularly during and after rainy season.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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