In the rainy season the most common infections spread by mosquito bites are Malaria, Dengue, and Chikungunya mainly in Asia, Africa, and Central-Southern America. It is difficult to differentiate each infection and we need thorough clinical investigations. Sometimes one can suffer from both Dengue and Chikungunya simultaneously. Malaria is caused by parasite, Dengue and Chikungunya both are caused by virus.
Below you can find the mosquito borne fevers and differentiating features:
|1||Malaria||Fever with cold chills, hot fever and a sweating stageRare rashesJoint pains that are not severEye pain or redness|
|2||Dengue||High fever.Rashes on face and arms.Bleeding spots maybe seen under the skin or nosebleeds.Joint painsEye painEye redness|
|3||Chikungunya||High FeverRashes on torso, armJoint pains with swelling in hands, wrist, leg and feet.Eye pain and redness.|
How do we confirm which disease?
Based on blood test we may confirm which disease it is and diagnosis of disease. As per doctors knowledge a drop in the Platelet and White blood cell count is typical of Dengue. We can have a clear visual of parasites in our blood cells under the microscope, confirming the diagnosis. Rapid Diagnostic Tests for Antigen detection as well as Serological tests for Antibody detection available now in most labs for these conditions which help to establish the diagnosis.
Due to the current pandemic situation every one must go for tests such as COVID, Flu, along with Mosquito fevers for early findings to prevention and treatment.
Treatment for Malaria, Dengue, Chikungunya, and COVID:
A specific treatment is available only for Malaria such as Anti-Malarial drugs are available. For other diseases like Dengue, Chikungunya caused by viruses, therefore treatment mainly consists of controlling fever and pain, maintaining hydration with fluids.
For COVID – We do not have any specific drugs
If you feel sick you should rest, drink plenty of fluid, and eat nutritious food. Stay in a separate room from other family members, and use a dedicated bathroom if possible. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.Everyone should keep a healthy lifestyle at home. Maintain a healthy diet, sleep, stay active, and make social contact with loved ones through the phone or internet. Children need extra love and attention from adults during difficult times. Keep to regular routines and schedules as much as possible.It is normal to feel sad, stressed, or confused during a crisis. Talking to people you trust, such as friends and family, can help. If you feel overwhelmed, talk to a health worker or counsellor.“
“Medical treatments: If you have mild symptoms and are otherwise healthy, self-isolate and contact your medical provider or a COVID-19 information line for advice.Seek medical care if you have a fever, a cough, and difficulty breathing. Call in advance.” [Source of covid info who.int]
Complications and Hospitalization?
These diseases lead to severe dehydration, shock due to increased fluid leakage from blood vessels and multiple organ failure are the main complications that can be seen in Dengue. A drastic fall in platelets can also lead to bleeding and hemorrhage in vital organs causing death.
Bursting of red blood cells and release of hemoglobin in the blood can cause kidney failure and death in Malaria. Children can be affected with sever anemia due to Malaria. Blood cells filled with the malaria parasite block small blood vessels of the brain, a complication called Cerebral malria can develop due to swelling and damage of the brain.
Death is quite rare scenario in mosquito-borne fevers but it is a high risk and need an immediate close medical/hospitalization required once symptoms appear. Whose immunity/healthy adults can be treated at home with the help of medication and regular fluid intake, and paracetamol for fever and pain.
MOSQUITO PREVENTIVE MEASURES:
- Use of mosquito nets for sleeping especially for children.
- Use of insecticides in houses, common corridors around the buildings, workplace and public transport.
- Use of repellents such as lotions, sprays, and rollins to prevent mosquito bite.
- Dispose wastage in a closed bin
- Cover all the water storage containers
- Clearing all storage tanks often.
- Wearing protective water proof footwear in rain and puddles
- Using permethrin for cleaning clothes to keep mosquito proof.
- Emptying all items which hold stagnant water like flower pots, trash-bins, containers, tires, buckets, rubber tubs, toys etc,.
Precautions while applying Mosquito preventions:
Do not apply creams/lotions.sprays on damaged skin.
Do not apply repellent creams/lotion near mouth, ear and eyes.
If you are using sunscreen then apply it first later apply repellents.
For babies do not use these mosquito repellent. Instead apply some natural remedies and use mosquito net.