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Dengue fever in the Galapagos?

Washington DC...
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12 posts
5 reviews
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Dengue fever in the Galapagos?

We are trying to plan a trip to the Galapagos for April 2015. We are wondering about the dengue fever risk, and it's difficult to find up to date information. From some quick internet searches, it appears that there were outbreaks in 2002 and 2010, with smaller numbers of cases reported in 2011 and 2012, but I'm not sure about any of this.

I'd appreciate the help if any of you can help us understand the risk in the Galapagos. For example, do the outbreaks tend to be seasonal (which seems to be the case with dengue in much of the world)? If so, what is the season? And have people worked to combat the risks (I'm thinking of the rather successful effort in Maldives villages to encourage people to minimize standing water outdoors)?

We travel with our young daughter, so we tend to be conservative about risk of illness, but we also try not to be scared off by any irrational fears.

Thanks for your help.

Ottawa, Canada
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for Galapagos Islands
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1. Re: Dengue fever in the Galapagos?

Dear ICB,

I was living in the Galapagos in 2002 with my 2 year old. Dengue fever is transmitted by a particular species of mosquito, and the insect must bite someone with dengue before being able to transmit it to someone else, by biting again. So, if no one in Galapagos has dengue, then there is no risk. There is no permanent dengue in the islands - what happens is that from time to time, someone travels to Galapagos from the mainland, having dengue. Then that might start what typically is a small, short outbreak limited to the back street neighbourhoods of Puerto Ayora.

So, I would say, your risk is minuscule - more so if you're planning on taking a cruise vs. staying in low cost hotels in town. Of course, as always, you can take the usual set of precautions designed to reduce mosquito bites.

Warmest regards,

Heather Blenkiron

Washington DC...
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12 posts
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2. Re: Dengue fever in the Galapagos?

Thanks for the reassurance Heather. And I should also say that your posts on so many of these discussions have been really helpful as I've been learning about the Galapagos while planning our trip. So thank you for taking the time to write so many thoughtful responses.

Santa Clara...
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3. Re: Dengue fever in the Galapagos?

Have you seen the CDC Dengue map? It tracks ongoing transmission and give you an idea before you go. The are no current alerts on the GI but some in the mainland.

http://www.healthmap.org/dengue/en/

4. Re: Dengue fever in the Galapagos?

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