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CHP investigates three linked imported cases of dengue fever

     The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health (DH) is today (October 29) investigating three linked imported cases of dengue fever (DF), and hence again urged the public to take precautions against mosquito-transmitted diseases.

     The three patients include a man aged 62, his daughter aged 32 and her husband aged 34. The male patient aged 62, with underlying illness, has presented with fever, myalgia and diarrhoea since October 18 and attended the Accident and Emergency Department of Ruttonjee Hospital (RH) on October 22 and 24. No hospitalisation was required and he has been in a stable condition all along.

     Both the female patient and her husband have good past health. The former has developed fever and chills while the latter has presented with fever, arthralgia and diarrhoea since October 20. They also consulted RH on October 22 and no admission was required. They have been in a stable condition.

     The patients' blood samples all tested positive for antibodies against dengue virus and dengue NS1 antigen upon testing by the CHP's Public Health Laboratory Services Branch.

     Initial enquiries revealed that the trio had travelled to Guangzhou, with the man aged 62 from October 13 to 16 while the couple on October 13, 14 and 19. Their travel collaterals have so far remained asymptomatic.

     Investigations by the CHP are proceeding.

     As of yesterday (October 28), 91 DF cases (one local, 90 imported) were reported to the CHP this year. In 2013 and 2012, 103 and 53 cases were filed respectively and all were imported.

     "In view of the recent local confirmed case and the DF activity remaining high in neighbouring areas, members of the public should heighten vigilance and take necessary precautions against mosquito-transmitted diseases both locally and during travel," a spokesman for the CHP urged.

     "At present, no effective vaccine for DF is available. Therefore, the best preventive measures are to avoid mosquito bites and to eliminate pockets of stagnant water that serve as breeding sites for mosquitoes," the spokesman reminded.

     Travellers should take the following preventive measures against DF:

* Wear loose, light-coloured, long-sleeved tops and trousers;
* Use DEET-containing insect repellent on exposed parts of the body and clothing; and
* Use mosquito screens or nets in rooms that are not air-conditioned.

     Anyone feeling unwell after returning from a trip should seek medical advice as soon as possible and provide travel details to their doctor.

     Members of the public should also avoid accumulation of stagnant water by:

* Disposing of all used cans and containers in covered rubbish bins;
* Changing the water in vases with plants once a week in order to prevent accumulation of stagnant water in the saucers;
* Covering all containers, wells and water storage points;
* Ensuring air-conditioner drip trays are free of stagnant water;
* Keeping all drains clear; and
* Paving all uneven ground.

     The public may visit the CHP's DF page ( or that of the DH's Travel Health Service ( for further information on DF and outbreaks in other areas. Travel agents, tour guides and travellers can check the latest news and advice on preventive measures.

     More information on mosquito control can be found on the FEHD's website (

     "Vector-borne diseases" is the theme of this year's World Health Day (WHD) of the World Health Organization. The public may visit the CHP's WHD Page ( for more information.

Ends/Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Issued at HKT 20:15


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