“I have been diagnosed with Dengue fever. What should I do? Should I worry?”

Having a confirmation of dengue infection, the doctor might allow you to return back home after a thorough evaluation of the routine blood test (CBC). You will be reassured and encouraged to stay well hydrated by adequately drinking plenty of fluids, advised to return back if feeling worse or on the next follow up which usually is within a day or two later. The follow up visit is to assess the general condition and to assess the dynamic changes of the different cell counts in the blood test usually seen in dengue infection.

Several symptoms such as nausea with persistent vomiting, severe abdominal pain or any bleeding might require hospitalization. The laboratory marker i.e. decreasing trend of blood cells are also the signs that doctor consider and suggest hospitalization.

If you need to admit in the hospital, don’t panic. Since the course of hospitalization is usually uneventful in most cases and usually last not more than 3-4 days. During your stay in the hospital, the nurse and doctor will take care you. Generally, you are recommended to rest, drink or eat as much as you want and to be cautious for any possible bleeding such as epistaxis, bleeding per gum, or in woman, bleeding per vagina. The doctor may give you some intravenous fluid to ensure that you get adequate hydration. Close monitoring such as repeated measure of your pulse, blood pressure or blood checked might be required in some case. Normally, you will have fever for 4-5 days then will enter to the period of recovery.

Signs of recovery generally begin with regaining of appetite, able to drink plenty of fluids and void as much. You will have no fever and feel much better. The recovery phase is frequently associated with a generalized rash over the body, and itchiness over parts of the body. It is not harmful and the rash will be gone within 1-2 days.

Normally, the doctor will discharge you from the hospital once you have no fever for 24 hours and lab test is much improving. All laboratory parameters will usually return to normal within a week or two. Doctor may recommend you for a follow up visit to be sure that everything is returned to normal.

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