25 October 2012
Dengue fever in Madeira (Portugal) update including cases in travellers
This updates case numbers reported in the News item of 19 October 2012.
As of 24 October 2012, a total of 52 laboratory confirmed cases of dengue fever have been reported in Madeira since the outbreak began on 3 October . A further 404 probable cases have been reported. Forty patients have required hospital treatment, no deaths have occurred.
A team of experts from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) are working with the Madeira General Directorate of Health to control the outbreak.
Cases in travellers from the European Union
As of 25 October 2012, four cases of dengue have been reported in European travellers who visited Madeira during late September and early October [2,3]. The cases include travellers from France (2), Sweden (1) and England (1). The case from England is recovering well at home.
Advice for travellers
Currently there are no travel restrictions to Madeira. However, all travellers to areas where dengue is known or presumed to occur should practise mosquito bite avoidance. Aedes mosquitoes bite in the day, particularly around dawn and dusk.
Travellers who develop symptoms such as fever, severe headache, muscle pain and a rash within 14 days of visiting Madeira are advised to seek medical advice.
There is no vaccine available to protect against dengue.
Further information about dengue can be found on the NaTHNaC Health Information Sheet on dengue fever.
Advice for health professionals
Health professionals who suspect a case of dengue fever in a traveller should send appropriate samples for testing (with full travel and clinical history) to the Health Protection Agency, Rare and Imported Pathogens Laboratory.
1. Minestério da Saúde. Comunicado do Director Geral Da Saúde, Dengue na Região Autónoma da Madeira – atualização 24/10/2012. In Portuguese. [Accessed 26 October 2012]. Available at: http://www.dgs.pt/
2. Health Protection Agency. Update of dengue fever cases in Madeira, Portugal. 25 October 2012. [Accessed 25 October 2012]. Available at: http://www.hpa.org.uk/NewsCentre/NationalPressReleases/
3. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Epidemiological update: Dengue fever outbreak, Madeira, Portugal, 52 cases confirmed and four cases in three European countries. 25 October 2012. [Accessed 25 October 2012]. Available at: http://tinyurl.com/cjoehp6