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Puerto Rico declares dengue epidemic with six deaths

Published:Wednesday | October 10, 2012 | 1:15 PM

CMC - At least six people have died from Dengue Fever in Puerto Rico, including two children under the age of 10. Stemming from this, the island’s health department has declared a dengue epidemic.

Health Secretary Lorenzo Gonzalez said just under 5,000 cases have been reported including 21 cases of the potentially fatal hemorrhagic dengue.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 342 new cases were reported in one week last month, twice the number of cases during the same period last year.

Dengue cases usually flare up from August to January.

The mosquito-borne virus causes fever, severe headaches and extreme joint and muscle pain.

Dengue claimed a record 31 lives during a 2010 epidemic that saw more than 12,000 suspected cases.