Feb. 23, 2005 The Health Department plans to spray for mosquitoes this week on St. Thomas and in one to two weeks on St. John, Dr. Audria Thomas said.
Thomas, the Health Department's district health officer for St. Thomas and St. John, said the department sprayed on St. Croix on Jan. 27.
The early winter rains created breeding grounds for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, the mosquitoes that can carry dengue fever.
However, Thomas said the rate at which people are contacting dengue is decreasing since the rain stopped falling.
She said that since October 2005, the Health Department sent blood samples from 60 people for testing. Of those samples, up to 75 percent of the samples were positive.
St. Croix had one case, St. John four, with the rest being on St. Thomas.
"I don't know why there were more cases on St. Thomas," she said, noting that the rainfall was similar on all three islands.
Anecdotal evidence indicates that other people got sick but did not seek treatment.
She said that this season's outbreak produced more serious cases than ever seen before. One infant died from the disease in October.
Thomas said the Sero Type 2 is the kind of dengue that's hit the Virgin Islands.
She said babies less than a year old and older people over age 65 are most vulnerable.
There is no treatment for dengue. Thomas said drinking lots of fluids helps alleviate the symptoms if you're not sick enough to go to the hospital.
"Once the fluid starts going, it's remarkable how much better people feel," she said.
She said people should drink enough fluids so they urinate a lot.
And if they don't feel well, they should stay in bed.
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