Everything you need to know about dengue shock syndrome

Some common symptoms of the condition include abdominal pain or tenderness, persistent vomiting, clinical fluid, mucosal bleeding and Lethargy or restlessness.

Dengue Shock Syndrome is one among the many stages of dengue hemorrhagic fever, which is a fatal condition, that usually occurs in young children and also the elderly. Shock syndrome usually occurs after two to seven days of infection, and patients can be seen having symptoms like blueness around the mouth caused by circumoral cyanosis, spitting blood, heart inflammation, pneumonia, sudden collapse, weak pulse, easy bruising and bleeding.

The patient can also experience water being filled in lungs and the stomach, liver enzymes being elevated, and the gallbladder being infected and swollen. “The urine output will decrease, the various salt (sodium, potassium, calcium) level in the body will be altered, and creatinine and urea levels will increase. Apart from this, the patient can also witness acidosis and breathing difficulty. Later as hours progress, he/she may start bleeding from everywhere in the body due to very low platelet levels. The condition of patients who have diabetes, heart disease or lung-related issues will deteriorate fast and eventually lead to the need for ventilator and ICU care”, said Dr Ambanna Gowda, Consultant, Internal Medicine, Fortis Hospital.

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Who is more prone to dengue fever?

While there is no reason/ research that can prove why some people get severe dengue fever that leads to the final stage of dengue called dengue shock syndrome, it is believed that those with a weak immune system and those who are developing dengue infection for the second time, are more vulnerable to dengue fever.

The severity also depends on multiple reasons such as immunity, recurrent dengue infection, and multiple comorbidities and also who is suffering from the illness. In some cases, malnutrition is also one of the factors for dengue, as it weakens the immune system. The shock in dengue is a very complex diagnosis and there are no methods to predict the outcome and progression. There has been no specific therapy that has been shown to be effective.

Signs of dengue shock syndrome

* Abdominal pain or tenderness

* Persistent vomiting

* Clinical fluid accumulation (i.e., pleural effusion or ascites)

* Mucosal bleeding

* Lethargy or restlessness

* Liver enlargement (≥2cm)

* Increases in hematocrit concurrent with a rapid decrease in platelet count

Precautions and recommendations

* Get yourself tested for dengue if you have a high fever that is occurring frequently.

* Keep your surroundings clean, and avoid water logging in your area.

* Use mosquito repellent to avoid getting bitten by mosquitoes.

* Maintain a healthy lifestyle, avoid eating out too much.

* It is recommended to get yourself diagnosed at the initial stage in order to avoid the severity of the disease. A regular checkup and monitoring are suggested for people with a weak immune system.

Taking extra precautionary measures can help you and your loved ones avoid getting dengue.

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