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Current Trends Imported Dengue Fever -- United States, 1984

In 1984, 67 cases of dengue-like illness were reported to CDC from 30 states. Adequate blood samples were received on 44 cases. Of these, six (14%) were confirmed as dengue infection. The remaining 38 (86%) were negative for dengue antibody. Illness associated with confirmed imported dengue was relatively mild and of the classical type. No severe hemorrhagic disease was associated with any of the cases.

The six confirmed cases were reported from six states (Figure 1). Serologic evidence in two cases suggested dengue type 1 and 3 infections. By contrast, in 1983, antibody to all four dengue serotypes were detected. Dengue virus was not isolated from any of the cases imported into the United States in 1984.

Only one case of confirmed dengue was imported into a state (Tennessee) where Aedes aegypti may be found at least part of the year (Figure 1). The other five cases were imported into California, Missouri, New York, Virginia, and Wisconsin. No indigenous transmission of dengue was reported in the continental United States in 1984.

Travel histories of persons with confirmed dengue showed that infection was imported from Caribbean basin countries (Mexico and Haiti) and from Asia (India, Thailand, and the Philippines). Reported by Viral and Rickettsial Disease Laboratory, California Dept of Health Svcs; Div of Health, Section of Laboratory Svcs, Missouri Dept of Social Svc; Dept of General Svcs, Bureau of Microbiological Science, Richmond, Virginia; State Laboratory of Hygiene, Madison, Wisconsin; Center for Laboratories and Research, New York State Dept of Health; Div of Laboratories, Tennessee Dept of Public Health; Dengue Br, Div of Vector-Borne Viral Diseases, Center for Infectious Diseases, CDC.

Editorial Note

Editorial Note: The number of suspected dengue cases imported into the United States in 1984 was the lowest in several years and reflects the decreased epidemic dengue activity in most tropical areas of the world during that year, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, where only six and three dengue cases were confirmed, respectively. However, the amount of dengue is cyclic, and increased activity is expected to occur in the next year or so, at which time more imported cases may be anticipated in the United States. Many of the southern Gulf states of the United States are still infested with

  1. aegypti mosquitoes, the principal vector of epidemic dengue. The repeated introduction of dengue viruses poses a constant potential for dengue transmission in those states.

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