How is dengue transmitted?

Updated: May 03, 2019
  • Author: Darvin Scott Smith, MD, MSc, DTM&H; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Dengue virus transmission follows 2 general patterns: epidemic dengue and hyperendemic dengue. Epidemic dengue transmission occurs when dengue virus is introduced into a region as an isolated event that involves a single viral strain. If the number of vectors and susceptible pediatric and adult hosts is sufficient, explosive transmission can occur, with an infection incidence of 25-50%. Mosquito-control efforts, changes in weather, and herd immunity contribute to the control of these epidemics. Transmission appears to begin in urban centers and then spreads to the rest of the country. [8] This is the current pattern of transmission in parts of Africa and South America, areas of Asia where the virus has reemerged, and small island nations. Travelers to these areas are at increased risk of acquiring dengue during these periods of epidemic transmission.


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