The two dengue cases reported this year in Florida’s Broward County equal the number reported in 2022, according to that state’s Department of Health.
“Dengue is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito and is not normally present in Florida,” health officials said in a statement on the DOH website. “However, infected travelers can bring the virus back to Florida mosquitoes.”
The dengue virus was eliminated from the United States several decades ago, the Health Department noted, adding several cases are reported in Florida each year in people traveling to areas where the disease is present.
“These imported cases are usually from dengue endemic regions such as the Caribbean, Central and South America, and Asia,” the DOH website explained.
Ten cases of locally acquired dengue have been reported by non-Florida residents in 2023, with eight of them located in Miami-Dade County, according to a Fox News report. The other two were in Broward County.
“One hundred and ninety cases with onset in 2023 have been reported in individuals with travel history to a dengue-endemic area in the two weeks prior to onset,” health officials noted in its August 5 Arbovirus Surveillance Report.
The surveillance report revealed that most of the 164 cases of dengue reported in Florida, and serotyped by PCR testing, were found in people who visited Cuba.
Of the 130 dengue virus cases reported among people who traveled to Cuba, 112 contracted Dengue Virus 3.
There is no treatment for dengue fever or dengue hemorrhagic fever, health officials explain, but quick recognition and management of symptoms and complications is effective at preventing deaths.
There is no vaccine for dengue because the research is challenging due to variation in the four viral types, but multiple vaccine candidates are currently in development, according to the DOH website.
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