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Dengue can cause long-term damage! Here are 4 side effects you need to know about

Published on:11 August 2020, 18:20pm IST
Dengue is not like any other fever which comes, stays, and recovers but unfortunately it leaves traces that will haunt you for long.
Nikita Bhardwaj
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A mosquito bite can mess up with your whole life. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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Every year around this time we deal with the dengue menace. We’ve become so used to this monsoon occurrence, that most of us don’t even consider it to be a real big deal. For us it’s like just another fever with the only difference that this one has been caused by Aedes aegypti, a type of female mosquito. 

But what if we tell you that if you get dengue, then there are chances that you’ll have to deal with its long-term implications? Yes, it’s true. Everything in our body is governed by the simple funda of immunity. If your immunity is strong then you might recover quite nicely; but if it is fragile, then during and after dengue, you might feel the brunt of it.     

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What all is likely to happen? Well, here are the four long-term impacts of dengue fever:

1. Hair fall
Hair loss is a problem that is more or less seen in many people who have been affected from dengue fever. A 2018 study published in The Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology says that although this hair loss is not permanent, but thanks to weakened immunity, your follicles will get affected and take time in recovering.

2. Joint and muscle pain
This problem prevails when you are dealing with dengue and at times even after recovery. If the dengue fever reaches an extreme phase then problems like polyarthralgia (multiple joint pain) and myalgia (muscle pain) are prevalent.

dengue fever
Does accidental muscle cramps often hinder your workout? Then check your dengue history. Image Courtesy : Shutterstock

“Chronic fatigue syndrome is also seen in many patients. Basically, it happens in most viral infections, including covid-19. You feel tired all the time and feel low on energy,” says Dr Vikrant Shah, intensivist and infectious disease specialist at Zen Multispeciality Hospital, Mumbai

According to the expert, polyarthralgia is more persistent in dengue patients. Also, if you have diabetes, liver, or kidney problems then this pain can be more severe due to your compromised immunity.

3. Deficiencies
Minerals and vitamin deficiencies have been commonly seen in people affected from dengue. This is also one of the reasons why joint pain becomes worse during and after dengue.

According to a study, people who have been affected by dengue are found to be deficient in vitamin D, B12, E, any other important micronutrients. Due to which they have to go one on one with multiple face diseases and disorders.

4. Anxiety and depression
Surprisingly this is also one of the long-term side effects of dengue fever. According to a study published in the International Journal of Mental Health Systems, a severe change in stress, depression, and anxiety score was seen in people who suffered from dengue fever.

dengue fever
Yes, dengue can also impact your mental well-being. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

“It is also because in some cases all the above problems reach a level where the patient loses all hope of recovering. Due to which anxiety and depression prevails,” explains Dr Shah.

“Dengue shock syndrome is another problem that happens with many patients. If someone doesn’t take good care post dengue, then during a second recurrence dengue can lead hypotension i.e. drop in blood pressure, which can get really severe,” concludes Dr Shah.

Do you know, according to the WHO, the number of dengue cases reported in India increased over eight folds over the last two decades, from 505,430 cases in 2000, to over 2.4 million in 2010, and 4.2 million in 2019?

And if the number is so startling then you can understand the kind of burden it can put on our healthcare sector. That’s why we need to be a little more vigilant so that you can stay safe from the implications of dengue fever.

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Nikita Bhardwaj Nikita Bhardwaj

Six-pack abs are all that Nikita needs, along with her daily dose of green tea. At Health Shots, she produces videos, podcasts, stories, and other kick-ass content.