MANILA, March 8 (Xinhua) -- Dengue cases in the Philippines surged in the first two months of this year, the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) said on Friday.
Based on the latest data released by the DOH Epidemiology Bureau, there are 36,664 dengue cases reported covering the period from Jan. 1 to Feb. 23, 2019. It was 67 percent higher compared to the 21,961 cases recorded during the same period last year.
The DOH said dengue, an acute viral infection that affects mostly young children and infants, is now a year-round disease. The spike in dengue cases comes as the DOH grapples with rising measles cases in the Philippines.
"The first step to prevent dengue is within our homes, it is important to remove any space or container that can hold unnecessary stagnant water which may become breeding sites of mosquitoes," Health Secretary Francisco Duque said.
Symptoms of dengue include sudden onset of fever of two to seven days, plus two of the following - headache, body weakness, joint and muscle pains, pain behind the eyes, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, and skin rashes.
"It is important to seek early consultation between one to three days of fever to immediately recognize the disease, which may require the patient to increase fluid intake, especially Oral Rehydration Solution that is proven to be life-saving for dengue patients," the DOH advisory said.