The Pakistan Meteorological Department has warned of a dengue outbreak in eight big cities of the country from October 10 to November 20.
A high alert has been issued for Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Hyderabad, Faisalabad, and Multan.
According to a notification issued by the Met Office Friday, dengue fever spreads rapidly during the post-monsoon season i.e. September 20 to December 5. "The dengue triggers during those periods where temperature and humidity threshold remains 26.29 degrees Celsius and 60% respectively."
The active period for dengue attacks is two hours after sunrise and two hours before sunset. The breeding stops once the temperature falls below 16 degrees Celsius.
"Keeping in view the current and future climate outlook, the atmospheric variables are providing an ideal environment for a dengue outbreak [in the cities mentioned above]," the Met Office revealed, advising all stakeholders, national health agencies and dengue control centres, to stay updated and take precautionary measures.
Dengue cases rise
On Friday, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa reported its first death from dengue fever. The woman hailed from Abbottabad.
In the last 24 hours, Punjab reported over 200 new dengue cases of which 167 were from Lahore. Most of the cases were recorded from Defense, Gulberg, Iqbal Town, and Samanabad.
So far, nearly 10 people have lost their lives to dengue in Karachi. The health department has directed officials to speed up the process of waste disposal urging people to cooperate with the government.
In a media briefing on Wednesday, SAPM on Health Dr Faisal Sultan took notice of the uptick in cases. “Make sure rainwater is not accumulated near your residence and ensure cleanliness.”
Symptoms of dengue
The WHO says these are the symptoms of dengue. They usually last between two to seven days.
- Severe headache
- Pain behind the eyes
- Muscle and joint pains
- Swollen glands
There is no specific treatment for dengue fever. Fever reducers and pain killers can be taken to control the symptoms of muscle ache and pain, and fever.