Possible Spread of Dengue in the U.S.
A virus most Americans have never heard of could become a potential health threat.
Akinso: A virus most Americans have never heard of could become a potential health threat. Previously confined to tropical and subtropical climates, dengue, a mosquito-borne virus, is becoming a much more serious problem along the U.S.-Mexico border in the commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Dr. David Morens, senior scientific advisor at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the widespread of dengue in the continental United States is a real possibility.
Morens: There is a theoretical risk of transmission and cases and even epidemic, hopefully small ones, in a number of states that we don't think of as being tropical.
Akinso: Those who get the illness sometimes experience minor bleeding, such as from the nose or gums, high fever, serve headache, pain behind the eyes and in joints and muscles, a rash and dropping of blood pressure. Early diagnosis and treatment of dengue is critical to preventing shock and death. Dr. Morens is optimistic that scientist will develop a vaccine. This is Wally Akinso at the National Institutes of Health Bethesda, Maryland.
About This Audio Report
Reporter: Wally Akinso
Sound Bite: Dr. David Morens