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Paris Olympics Could Become Dengue Hotspot with 20% Mortality Rate in a Week

Daniel Kim Views  

Yonhap News

If you travel to Europe for summer vacation, bring mosquito repellent. 

The Asian tiger mosquito, which mainly lives in Southeast Asia and spreads dengue fever and the Zika virus, has spread to many European countries, and local cases of dengue fever are increasing. Since no vaccine or treatment for dengue fever exists, extra caution is required when planning summer vacations.

Especially with the Paris Olympics, which will be held from July 26th to August 11th, there are concerns that it could become a hotspot for the global spread of dengue fever. 

BBC and CNN reported on cases of dengue fever spreading across Europe, emphasizing the need for caution.

According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), 130 cases of dengue fever, previously limited to tropical regions, were recorded in the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA) last year, almost double the number from the previous year.

The Asian tiger mosquito has been found in at least 18 European countries, including France, Spain, Greece, Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, the Netherlands, and Slovakia.

It has been reported that the mosquito was also captured in northern Paris, France, where the Summer Olympics will be held next month.

France anticipates that over 10 million athletes, spectators, officials, and tourists from around 200 countries will gather in Paris during the Olympics.

The ECDC reported that the Asian tiger mosquito, which spreads dengue fever, appears to have perfectly adapted to Paris’s urban environment.

Most people infected with dengue fever are asymptomatic. If infected with the dengue virus, symptoms such as fever, rash, headache, chills, and muscle pain appear after an incubation period of 3 to 14 days. While most people recover after about a week, in severe cases, the mortality rate can reach up to 20%.

Before or during the Paris Olympics, people infected with dengue fever may not even know they are carrying the virus. Therefore, they could potentially spread the disease after the incubation period after returning to their home countries.

Since there is no effective preventive vaccine or treatment for dengue fever yet, it is crucial to prevent infection in the first place.

The ECDC recommends removing stagnant water from gardens or balconies where mosquitoes can breed and using insect screens and repellents on windows and doors.

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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