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Dengue Fever in Madeira (Portugal)

11 Oct 2012

The Public Health Authority of Portugal has issued an update on the outbreak of dengue virus infection in residents of the Autonomous Region of Madeira, Portugal.

As of 10 October 2012, a cumulative total of 18 confirmed cases of dengue fever have been recorded, with a further 191 probable cases awaiting confirmation. A total of 26 cases have required treatment in hospital. Eleven cases remain in hospital at present.

Advice for Travellers

The main carrier of dengue virus is the Aedes aegypti mosquito and it has been present on the island of Madeira since 2004. Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are not present on the mainland of Portugal which lies 1000 km from the island of Madeira.

The risk of dengue fever in Madeira is very low for travellers. There is no vaccine available against dengue fever and the only prevention is to avoid mosquito bites.

Travellers returning from Madeira who develop symptoms of dengue fever e.g. fever, headache, muscle and joint pain or a rash, within 14 days of leaving the island, should consult with their GP immediately.