Bring Bug Protection! Dengue Fever Outbreak Reported in Senegal

A black mosquito sits on a light-toned human finger in front of a green background.
Travellers headed to Senegal should take steps to protect themselves from mosquito bites due to an outbreak of dengue fever.

Health officials in the West African country have reported the spread of the viral disease, which is known to cause nausea, headache, fever, rash, vomiting, minor bleeding, as well as pain in the eyes, muscles, and joints.

Although most patients recover within one to two weeks, severe cases of dengue fever may result in shock, hemorrhaging, organ failure, and death. The virus is transmitted through mosquito bites.

Here are some tips to reduce your risk of bug bites:

  • Use insect repellant with a minimum of 20% DEET
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  • Cover exposed skin by wearing thick clothing and tuck your pants into your socks
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  • Stay in rooms with air conditioning and window screens
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  • Sleep under bed nets treated with insecticide
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Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Image source: Oregon State University

CDC Warns Pregnant Travellers about Rubella Outbreak in Japan

Travellers headed to Japan should get vaccinated against rubella to protect themselves from an outbreak in the country, advises the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Rubella is an infectious disease spread by sneezes and coughs.  Also referred to as the “German Measles,” it causes rashes and fevers that usually last between two and three days and symptoms are often mild.

Prior to entering Japan, the CDC recommends travellers receive the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine.

Pregnant women, however, are warned not to enter the country due to the risks the rubella virus poses to developing babies. It is known to cause birth defects such as mental disabilities, deafness, cataracts, and organ damage.

Japanese health officials report that most cases are occurring in the Kanto region in locations such as Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, and Saitama.

Source: CDC