LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, May 7 (PIA) -- One of the emerging mosquito-borne diseases is Japanese encephalitis recording a number of cases in the Cordillera region based on the Department of Health figures.
DOH-CAR Medical Officer IV Dr. Alexei Marrero stressed the need to do strategies or some innovations in the prevention and control of the viral disease just like what is being done in countering other mosquito borne diseases prevalent in the region such as dengue, Zika virus, Chikungunya, and malaria.
A total of eight confirmed cases were recorded in the region this year - two in Benguet, one in Baguio and five who are not from the Cordillera Region but were admitted in hospitals here. A total of 75 cases were recorded from 2015 – 2017 in the region - 12 from Benguet, eight from Baguio, three each from Kalinga and Mountain Province, two each from Abra and Ifugao and 45 from outside the Cordillera region.
Marrero said Japanese encephalitis may range from mild to acute infection. It is characterized by flu-like illness with headache, fever, muscle pains, and often gastrointestinal symptoms including vomiting.
The illness may progress to an infection of the brain with neck stiffness, pain in the eyes when looking at light, disturbances in behavior, seizures, loss of consciousness, and muscle weakness or paralysis, he added.
Among the strategies recommended in the prevention and control of mosquitoes, a vector of such diseases, include elimination of breeding sites employing search and destroy activities, use of larvicides, net covers, proper garbage disposal, and implementation of government policies and passage of legislations, and reducing mosquito population through spraying, fogging or misting with insecticides.
Another method is by preventing contact between human and mosquito like use of long-lasting insecticide-treated nets and repellants. Susan C. Aro (ALT/SCA-PIA CAR, Benguet)