Why Dengue Fever is Not a Big Flu
October 23, 2010
Let’s start with Why is It That People Call it a Big Flu.
Like flu, dengue fever is a virus. And like flu, it comes with bouts of high fever.
Now if you don’t mind, let’s go over the differences.
1) Transmission : you don’t catch dengue from someone. You catch it from something. Namely, a mosquito.
2) Time : a solid flu lasts 4 to 5 days. Dengue can last up to 3 weeks.
3) Element of Cosiness : flu means winter in Europe, too much snowballing, central heating and mummy making hot soup for you. Dengue, on the other hand, is a dirty country disease spread by stagnant water mosquitoes.
4) Blood : Unlike flu, dengue requires that you monitor your platelet count on a daily basis – they do fall dramatically.
5) Organs : Unlike flu, dengue also requires that you undergo a full abdomen sonography to check that your vital organs have not been affected by the disease and the eventual internal bleeding a very low platelet count can cause.
6) Rash : Unlike flu, dengue fever comes with a delightful, itchy rash.
7) Bone-ache : Ok, the flu sometimes makes your bones ache. A little. Not constant splitting bone-ache for 4 days. Nope. That’s dengue.
8 ) Pukish fever : the fever that comes with dengue is so intense, it makes you feel nauseous.
9) Pukish fluids : because you have to ingest tons of fluids, dengue makes you feel like throwing up. 7+8 = you do end up throwing up at some point.
10) Retro-orbital pain : unlike flu, dengue gives you excruciating retro-orbital pain, ie: it hurts to move your eyes. So no books and no dvd for you. Not surprisingly then, dengue is tough on the troops morale.
11) Oh, and before I forget : dengue is a bi-phasic disease. Meaning that when you start feeling better and your platelet count rises again, the fever comes back.
Now, the next person who tells me I just have a big flu, I cry.