Epidemiologist calls for action to prevent dengue escalation in São Carlos

Aedes aegypti mosquito, which transmits dengue fever, zika and chikungunya (Photo: Disclosure)

São Carlos and its region could see an increase in the number of dengue fever cases in the coming weeks, with a peak in notifications in April. The fourth month of the year is usually when the disease spreads the most in the central region, according to epidemiologist Bernardino Alves Souto.

São Carlos added from the beginning of the year until March 15, 51 confirmed cases of dengue fever. The incidence rate of Aedes aegypti breeding sites is high and on alert, the health ministry said.

“In our region, April is traditionally the month when we have the most dengue fever. We haven’t entered April yet, so you have to be careful for the next few months. In fact, you still have to be careful, but until what the end of April is still a critical period for dengue cases”, advises the professor of medicine at UFSCar.

The alert “triggered” in São Carlos with the strong spread of the disease in Araraquara, a town 40 km from here. There, there are almost a thousand confirmations of the disease. In Ibaté, a city which is located between the two agglomerations, the balance sheet is 28 cases since the beginning of the year. In Américo Brasiliense, a municipality also close to Morada do Sol, there are 59 cases.

The intense movement of people between municipalities can facilitate the spread of the disease. An infected worker in Araraquara may contribute to the number of cases of the disease in São Carlos, for example.

In the capital of technology, according to the Ministry of Health, the largest hotbed of events is in the Parque do Bicão area.

Tires can serve as breeding grounds for Aedes aegypti. (Photo: Publicity/CCS)

“What is happening in Araraquara is bound to happen in São Carlos too, because we are subject to the same climatic conditions that influence dengue fever epidemics. We have the same problems of basin water in cans, in cans. Respect the borders “, he comments.

According to the professor of medicine, the situation in Araraquarense is “an alert” for the municipality to “radicalize preventive measures”. “Few São Carlos would be safe from an outbreak in a state that is already occurring nearby,” he concludes. The actions are official in nature, such as greater monitoring of cases of the disease, blocking and stepping up inspections, and individual in nature, with each family monitoring their own backyard.

Care all year round
The prevalence of Aedes aegypti, the mosquito that transmits dengue fever, during the rainy season does not excuse the population from cleaning backyards and eliminating proliferation sites during the fall and winter.

Mosquito eggs last for up to a year after being laid and can carry the already inoculated virus with them. In other words, when the larva becomes an adult, it immediately becomes a vector of the disease.

“Every container containing water must be thrown away. The gutter must be monitored to see if it does not accumulate. Any stagnant water contributes to the spread of the virus and the dengue epidemic”, adds- he.

The most effective way to reduce dengue fever transmission is to eliminate the focus of the Aedes aegypti mosquito (Photo: Fernanda Sunega/PMC)
The most effective way to reduce dengue fever transmission is to eliminate the focus of the Aedes aegypti mosquito (Photo: Fernanda Sunega/PMC)

has just been eradicated
It sounds like an urban legend, but the dengue mosquito was eradicated in Brazil in the middle of the last century. In 1958, the World Health Organization (WHO) even declared Brazil a vector-free country. Population movements and the recklessness of the population gave a “little helping hand” so that the “odious ones of Egypt” (translation of the Latin name Aedes aegypti) returned to Brazilian lands.

Present in the country, there was no other. With regular summer rains and intense heat, Brazil has become a hotbed for mosquitoes.

The most effective way to reduce dengue fever transmission is to eliminate the focus of the Aedes aegypti mosquito (Photo: Fernanda Sunega/PMC)
The Aedes aegypti mosquito is the transmitter of zika, dengue and chikungunya

triple trouble
In addition to dengue fever, Aedes can bring with it three other viruses. These are zika and chikungunya and yellow fever, the disease responsible for the country’s first urban epidemic, in 1850, which terrorized the interior of São Paulo at the end of the same century.

With the increase in the incidence of Aedes, the likelihood of it being a carrier of other diseases also increases. And with that, multiple casting is guaranteed, according to Souto.

“If we let the mosquito reproduce, it can transmit any of the three diseases or even all three at the same time, depending on whether the mosquito is infected or not”, adds the epidemiologist.

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