Dengue fever case confirmed in Collier County

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COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. – The Florida Department of Health has issued a mosquito-borne illness advisory after a human case of locally-acquired dengue fever has been confirmed in Collier County.

“The person in question was symptomatic. They did go seek medical attention. That is how we determined they had dengue fever,” said Kristina Hollingsworth, a spokesperson with the Florida Department of Health in Collier County. 

DOH also wants people to be on alert since there is a heightened concern additional residents will become ill.

“The Florida Department of Health in Collier County has not reported a locally acquired case of Dengue Fever for at least 20 years.”

Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease in tropical and subtropical areas, typically South America and Africa. According to the CDC, the most common symptoms are nausea, rash, aches, and pains.

“Symptoms of Dengue Fever include a sudden high fever, muscle and joint aches, more than severe than the flu, severe headaches primarily located behind the eyes,” said Hollingsworth. 

In severe cases, a person who gets sick with dengue fever can go into shock, suffer internal bleeding, and it can even cause death. Warning signs for severe dengue usually begin 24-48 hours after the fever has gone away. If you or a family member is suffering from belly pain, vomiting blood, bleeding from the nose or gums, or feeling tired, restless, or irritable, you are asked to go you a local clinic or emergency.

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Collier County Mosquito Control and DOH-Collier are now increasing and continuing surveillance and prevention efforts.

“Our program is first and foremost one to protect public health. We have intensified our surveillance efforts. We are testing the mosquitos for disease. And we’re also going to be treating the area for both adult and larval mosquitoes in the coming days quite intensively,” said Patrick Linn, the Executive Director of the Collier Mosquito Control District. 

They advise residents to drain standing water to stop mosquitos from multiplying. 

“Something as small as a bottle cap can host hundreds of eggs over a period of time. This mosquito can be found in vermilions, you need to rinse those out. Bird baths, you want to drain those. Leaf litter, tarps, anything that holds water, said Linn.”

They also recommend wearing appropriate clothing, such as long pants and long sleeves, for people working in areas where mosquitoes are present.

“The public can do more than mosquito control can. We encourage the public to drain any standing water that they have on their property. Certainly want to avoid being out at dusk and dawn. Although these are daytimes biters … you want to watch them all day long,” said Linn. 

At this time the Florida Department of Health and the Collier Mosquito Control District have not been able to directly identify a positive mosquito to go along with the Dengue Fever. 

Please visit the Florida Department of Health website by clicking here for more information. If you believe you have been infected, seek medical attention immediately. 

This is an ongoing story. Count on NBC2 to keep you updated with information about the Dengue Fever as it comes into our newsroom. 

Tags: collier countydengue feverFlorida Department of HealthMosquito

 

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