Healthcare News & Insights

Dengue fever found in New York

Here’s the latest lesson in tropical diseases’ ability to travel far afield from their “home” regions.

A recent outbreak of Dengue fever in the Florida Keys was discovered only after it infected at least one visitor from the New York region. The woman, a resident of Rochester, New York, was diagnosed with the unlikely disease by a quick-thinking primary care doc, Dr. Adriane Trout, after an initial round of anti-virals failed to resolve the patient’s symptoms.

After Trout notified local officials in Florida, 28 patients tested positive for Dengue fever. Dengue is a virulent disease, which in a worst-case scenario essentially liquifies the patient’s organs. Some of the infected have far milder symptoms for reasons that aren’t yet known.

The CDC is urging doctors to test any patients who have been in subtropical areas for Dengue fever if they present with viral symptoms that aren’t otherwise explained.

Public health officials said it’s likely more people who were never diagnosed or tested also had Dengue.

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