HONOLULU (KHON2) – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reminding the public about the dangers of dengue. 

According to the CDC, dengue is a viral illness spread by mosquitoes that is commonly found in tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, the Americas and the Pacific islands.

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According to the Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) the last reported dengue outbreak on Hawaii Island was from 2015-2016. 

They report the majority of the dengue cases in U.S. citizens take place in Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa and Guam. 

The DOH report dengue not being an endemic in Hawaii. That’s because all recent cases of the disease have been infected through exposures outside of the state.

The best way to prevent any mosquito-borne infections in Hawaii or in another tropical location is to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. 

Steps you can take to prevent mosquito bites include:

  • Apply Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved repellents as recommended by product label.
  • Wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts when outdoors.
  • Maintain screens on windows and doors.
  • Empty or drain water at least weekly from garbage cans, house gutters, buckets, pool and boat covers, coolers, toys, flowerpots, or any other containers.
  • Remove/destroy discarded tires, bottles, cans, pots and pans, and broken appliances, or anything that holds water.

Symptoms of dengue include a sudden fever, severe headaches, eye pain, joint and muscle pain, and sometimes a rash. 

DOH report the rash usually appears on the hands, arms, legs and feet 3 to 4 days after the fever begins. 

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The symptoms commonly start four to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito, but DOH reports the onset of symptoms can range from three to 14 days. People generally recover within 1 to 2 weeks.