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New Dengue Strain Detected in Delhi NCR – Here’s What You Need to Know

New Dengue Strain Detected in Delhi NCR - Here's What You Need to Know

Dengue fever, a familiar name in the world of mosquito-borne diseases, has recently taken a more concerning turn. A new dengue strain, known as DENV-2 or D2, has surfaced and is spreading rapidly in the Delhi-NCR region. This alarming development has caught the attention of health experts, raising questions about its severity and implications. In this article, we will dive into the details of this new dengue strain and provide you with essential information on symptoms, prevention, and control.

1. Meet the New Dengue Strain: DENV-2 (D2)

The latest dengue strain causing a stir is known as DENV-2, or simply D2. This variant of the virus is causing significant concern among health experts due to its rapid spread. Dengue virus is primarily transmitted to humans through the bites of infected female mosquitoes, with the Aedes aegypti mosquito being the primary carrier.

2. D2 – The Most Dangerous Dengue Strain

Among the various strains of dengue, D2 is now gaining notoriety as the most severe and dangerous. Dengue itself has four major strains: DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, and DENV-4. An important point to note is that infection with one strain provides immunity against that specific strain only. The World Health Organization (WHO) explains that although these four serotypes are similar, they are different enough to offer cross-protection for only a limited period after infection by any one of them. Secondary infection with a different serotype or multiple serotypes can lead to a severe form of dengue.

3. D2 Takes Center Stage in India

Recent research conducted by multiple institutions, including the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), has revealed that cases of dengue have steadily increased over the last five decades, especially in Southeast Asian countries. In recent years, the D2 strain has emerged as the dominant one. Until 2012, D1 and D3 were the prevailing strains, while D4, considered less infectious, has been spreading more rapidly in recent times. This research, published in PLoS Pathogens, analyzed genetic sequences of Indian dengue strains from patients infected between 1956 and 2018.

4. Recognizing Symptoms of D2 Strain Infection

Individuals infected with the D2 strain may experience various symptoms, including:

  • A sudden drop in platelet count
  • Higher risk of dengue hemorrhagic fever
  • High fever
  • Headache
  • Pain behind the eyes
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Skin rashes
  • Restlessness
  • Thirst
  • Weakness
  • Bleeding gums or nose
  • Feeling cold

If you or someone you know exhibits these symptoms, it’s essential to seek medical attention promptly.

5. Understanding Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF)

Dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) is a severe form of dengue characterized by high fever, hemorrhagic phenomena, hepatomegaly (enlarged liver), and often circulatory disturbances leading to shock. It typically starts with symptoms such as fever, anorexia, vomiting, headache, and muscle or joint pain.

6. Prevention and Control Measures

While medical intervention becomes crucial once symptoms appear, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk of infection:

  • Practice good hygiene.
  • If dengue cases are reported in your area, wear full-sleeve clothing and use mosquito nets while sleeping.
  • Use high-quality mosquito repellents in your home.
  • Stay vigilant and seek medical attention if you experience dengue symptoms.

Remember that early detection and proper care can make a significant difference in the outcome of dengue infection. Stay informed, stay safe, and take preventive measures to protect yourself and your community from this evolving health threat.

What is the D2 dengue strain, and why is it a concern?

The D2 dengue strain, also known as DENV-2, is a new variant of the dengue virus that has recently emerged in the Delhi-NCR region. It is a cause for concern due to its rapid spread and increased severity compared to other dengue strains.

How does the D2 strain differ from other dengue strains?

The D2 strain is considered the most dangerous among dengue strains. Dengue has four major serotypes (DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, and DENV-4), and infection with one serotype provides immunity only against that specific serotype. Secondary infection with a different serotype, like D2, can lead to a severe form of dengue.

Is D2 the dominant dengue strain in India now?

Yes, recent research has shown that the D2 strain has become the dominant dengue strain in India. Until 2012, D1 and D3 were prevalent, but D2 has gained prominence in recent years.

What are the symptoms of D2 strain infection?

Symptoms of D2 strain infection include a sudden drop in platelet count, a higher risk of dengue hemorrhagic fever, high fever, headache, pain behind the eyes, joint and muscle pain, vomiting, nausea, skin rashes, and other signs like restlessness, thirst, weakness, and bleeding gums or nose.