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Decline in dengue cases noted by DOH

Department of Health Acting Director, Fara Utu says there is a decline in the Dengue Fever cases in the territory. Responding to Samoa News queries, Utu explained that the suspected cases of dengue fever — cases with high instances of flu-like symptoms and acute fever, rash and gastroenteritis (stomach flu) from May 9 to June 15 has dropped.


According to Utu, between June 1 and June 7 there were 27 cases; from June 8-14 there were 22 cases, and for June 15-21 there were 15 cases, so there is a decrease.


In the meantime, in the test results for 18 specimens that were sent off island, 13 came back positive and five came back negative. 


She said that DOH continues their 3D campaign and stresses public cooperation with environmental measures. As reported earlier, DOH said that usual symptoms of dengue are acute nausea, vomiting, fever, rash, joint pain and general fatigue and weakness. There were two confirmed cases of people who died last month from dengue fever, including one 37-year old and one 10 month old baby.


A third death was the case of a 16-year-old girl, suspected to have dengue, however, DOH Medical Director Tamasoali’i Dr John Tufa, told Samoa News that it was confirmed by a reference laboratory from Hawai’i that she did not have dengue. He said the lab will test for Leptospirosis, as that is what they suspect this matter to be.


According to Tamasoali’i, the information relayed to DOH from the lab is that the girl’s test results came back negative for dengue. According to Centers for Disease Control, Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that affects humans and animals.


It is caused by bacteria of the genus Leptospira. In humans, it can cause a wide range of symptoms, some of which may be mistaken for other diseases. According to CDC the bacteria that cause leptospirosis are spread through the urine of infected animals, which can get into water or soil and can survive there for weeks to months. Many different kinds of wild and domestic animals carry the bacteria.


These can include, but are not limited to cattle; pigs; horses; dogs; rodents and wild animals. “When these animals are infected, they may have no symptoms of the disease. “Infected animals may continue to excrete the bacteria into the environment continuously or every once in a while — for a few months up to several years.”