Dengue outbreak: Triple surge in cases challenges Thai healthcare system in first half year

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A shocking surge in dengue patients has been recorded in the first half of this year, with numbers almost triple that of the same period last year, according to the Department of Disease Control (DDC). The dengue outbreak continues to challenge the healthcare system, as the number of infected individuals soars.

From January 1 to June 28, 27,377 dengue cases were identified, marking a near tripling of the numbers from the corresponding period the previous year. Furthermore, the DDC reported that 33 patients tragically lost their lives in these cases due to the severe dengue outbreak.

Dengue fever spread through the bites of infected Aedes-species mosquitoes continues to pose a significant public health issue. The DDC reported a notably steep rise in cases last month, with between 1,500 and 2,400 new patients diagnosed with dengue weekly. Shockingly, one to three deaths were reported weekly due to the viral infection.

The majority of these patients are young, between five and 14 years old, while the second most affected group of the dengue outbreak is in the age range of 15 to 24 years. Geographic data suggests that the South is the most affected region, closely followed by Bangkok and the Central Plains provinces, reported Bangkok Post.

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Widespread concern over this public health crisis is shared by medical professionals, including Dr Thira Woratanarat, an associate professor at the Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University. From his expert perspective, an urgent warning against the common practice of casually using aspirin to treat fevers is required due to the associated dangers.

To elaborate, if the fever proves to be a symptom of a dengue virus infection, aspirin’s propensity to increase the risk of developing Reye’s Syndrome, a severe disorder damaging all organs though predominantly the brain and liver, comes into play. This results in an acute increase of pressure inside the patient’s brain and often causes significant fat accumulations in the liver, amongst other organs.

Thailand News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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