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Analysis of Dengue in Sri Lanka

Dengue is becoming an increasingly important public health hazard in Sri Lanka. Unlike malaria, dengue is prevalent mostly in the urban areas. Unlike malaria, which has seen many epidemics over centuries, Dengue's more virulent and deadly form, Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever (DHF) has only a history of two decades. Until recently, it was confined to the Colombo metropolitan area but since has emerged in other cities and suburbs.

A study on the link between climate and dengue in Sri Lanka is being carried out in collaboration with Prof. Aravinda De Silva of the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health of the University of North Carolina and Dr. Marianne Hopp of the IRI. Some of the preliminary analysis shows a strong seasonality of dengue incidence with the outbreaks being more prevalent during the boreal summer. The seasonality of dengue transmission thus differs from malaria which is a spring and fall phenomenon. Our collaborator, Prof. De Silva's, independent research and this work also negates the viewpoint that the emergence of DHF had anything to do with climate change.

Positive cases in Colombo

Data from Dr. Aravinda De Silva and collaborators at the Medical Research Institute in Sri Lanka.

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