Diagnosis of dengue can be tough, as it’s signs & symptoms could easily be confused with symptoms of other diseases like malaria, typhoid and leptospirosis. The doctor usually asks about our medical & travel history. We shall provide the details of any international trips including the nations we visited along with dates and that of any contact we may have had with mosquitoes in the area. Some laboratory tests can identify the evidence of a dengue virus, however, the test results usually come too late. This may delay the treatment decisions.
Treatment of Dengue
There is no specific treatment for dengue fever. Doctors usually recommend that we take plenty of fluids for avoiding dehydration due to vomits and high fever. While healing from dengue fever, we shall watch for symptoms of dehydration. We shall visit a doctor as soon as we develop any of the following:-
- Decreased urination
- No or few tears
- Confusion or lethargy
- Dry lips of the mouth
- Clammy or cold extremities
Acetaminophen or Tylenol could alleviate pain & reduce the fever. We shall avoid pain relievers which may increase the bleeding complications. i.e. ibuprofen, aspirin, naproxen sodium. In case of severe dengue fever we may require:
- Supporting hospital care
- Blood pressure monitoring
- Intravenous IV fluid * electrolyte replacement
- Transfusion for placing blood loss
What can we do to ensure the correct diagnosis of Dengue?
- Note down the symptoms we may experience, including those which may seem nonrelevant to the reason for which we scheduled our appointment with a doctor.
- Note down vital personal information– We shall enlist our international travel history along with tentative dates & countries we visited & medicines taken during the journey. We shall also present a record of our immunizations, including pre-travel vaccinations
- Enlisting all our medicines– We shall enlist any supplements or vitamins we regularly take.
- Note down questions to ask- We should enlist our queries for the doctor as they could help us make the most of our time spent with the doctor. They shall be listed as the most important to the least important one too.