Dengue: Uninvited and Unwanted, Came to our House

Well I finally got dengue, I knew the chances were good, the numbers for Manabi were high but we hoped that we had taken all the precautions necessary to avoid these mosquito borne diseases.  We were wrong and I am now part of the growing statistic for the disease here in Ecuador.

My symptoms: first for about three days prior to the first big symptoms I had this awful feeling that I had bad breath, had not changed toothpastes, or eaten anything different but my mouth taste/odor was not right.  On Tuesday I had this headache pain right about my left eye…a sharp pain that lasted only a few seconds, it happened a few times and it was gone so I basically forgot about it. Early morning Wednesday after 1am I got up with the chills and a fever, had a terrible headache and pain in my eyes. I got up added another blanket and attempted to sleep.  Early the next morning I felt even worse, could hardly get out of bed, but assumed it was some sort of flu and was going to ride it out.  After sleeping on and off during the day on Wednesday, Joe was taking my temperature which stayed around 100-101 all day, he gave me Tylenol and as much water as I would drink.  I finally gave in and called my friend Eva around 6:30 pm to call Dra. Christina for me.  Dra. Christina arrived within 30 minutes, along with mi amiga Eva as my translator, and assessed my symptoms and diagnosed dengue…She gave me three shots, two in the backside and one in my arm, left a prescription for three items to get and to start taking 2 Tylenol every 6 hours starting the next morning…Drink plenty of water and get lots of rest.  Within 10 seconds after the first shot I could feel the difference and the headache started to dissipate.  No chills or measurable fever during the night.

Woke Thursday morning feeling beat up but with only a slight headache, tired and a slight fever.  Several things can happen over the next week or so – I can get a rash over my body, get the chills and fever back, and watch it doesn’t progress to something worse.

I guess the reason for writing this is to let folks know that it is not easily going to go away by itself.  As soon as you feel any of these symptoms go to your local clinic, call your general practitioner and please DO NOT TAKE any ibuprofen type products……..

We are pretty proactive people and when it comes to dengue, hemorrhagic fever from dengue, zika and chikungunya we take what I consider good precautions. Our yard is kept neat and all low hanging branches, bushes and flowers are kept cut back. We use Detan repellent every day, Joe fumigates the yard and house for mosquitoes every week and we walk around with cans of spray when we are outside.  We rake up leaves each morning and have no standing water around.  I do attempt to water early mornings so that the topsoil is not wet during the night hours. But none of those precautions help with this one mosquito. I could have been bitten while taking my morning walk but again I put on Detan before I leave the house, I could have been bitten at a local restaurant on Saturday night while out for dinner but again I wore Detan or I could have been bitten in my own home or yard where I always use Detan.

Everyday seemed to have a different symptom, first the headaches and eye sensitivity, next the fever and chills, next just sweats, total exhaustion, sick to stomach with diarrhea, after 12 days I finally feel back to my normal self.

Joe did get fresh papaya leaves from a producing tree and put them through the juicer added lemon juice and sugar and I drank that three times a day towards the end.  this was advice from a friend in Panama. I do think it helped.  World, look out. I’m back!!

18 thoughts on “Dengue: Uninvited and Unwanted, Came to our House

  1. Nancy, thanks for sharing. I am so sorry you were bitten but am so glad that you are recovering well. Do take good care. Blessings, Patricia

  2. Also happy that you are on the mend, not a pleasant thing to get. Hope you are completely recovered soon! Thanks also for sharing.

  3. Happy to hear you are feeling better. Glad I am not still there. Mosquitos love me and am sure I would have gone through it at some point. Please take care.

    • Lyndell, would not wish dengue on anyone. Be careful where you are my sister in Atlanta just said there are cases in Florida…use repellent Nancy

  4. Nancy, God bless you and Joe as you continue to recover. We try to do all of the things that you do to avoid that one nasty bite and so far, knock on wood, we have avoided all of the mosquito spread diseases that have come through town We are so sorry you had to experience this, but are also glad that you are recovering. Hope to see you soon! John and Mary

    • Hi Deb, made it 10 years thought we were doing everything right, guess not…I think our neighbor Estrella got it, she looked terrible yesterday and said she had the flu, it did not sound like the flu to me,,,this morning I walked by her tienda and the place is closed up tight….she is older that us like 73 or 74 it is a rough illness. How was zika and chikungunya??? not looking forward to them. Nancy

      • Nan, Chikungunya is the worst of them all because the virus gets trapped in your joints and causes arthritis like symptoms that can last for over a year. Zika is Chikungunya light. 3 days and it is over. We are still suffering from Chikungunya in the mornings and it has been over a year. 😦
        I hope Estrella recovers quickly. Dengue is no fun.

        • Deb, I walked by Estrella’s this morning and she was not downstairs, not sure if she even opened the tienda today as I did not go back out during the day. I will check tomorrow to be sure someone took her to the clinic. Not interested in any of these continue to use the Detan and Joe is spraying the yard like a crazy man..Nancy

      • Hey from the equator! Am glad you’re better, and Debbie, glad you’re better too. I had forgotten about the eye pain, which was reallly bad with my ‘first case’ in 2000. I managed to dodge the second case for 15 more years, but one brief period of not using repellent (everyone was out in town) managed to be the small window for a mosquito to say, ‘tag, you’re it!’

        They have sadistic senses of humor!

        I hope that the worst is behind you, and that you bounce back fast!

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