Dengue fever – an update review and implications for Nigeria, and similar countries
Background: In the last five decades, dengue has emerged as one of the most important infectious diseases, following a 30-fold
increase in global incidence throughout tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. The actual numbers of dengue cases are
under-reported and many cases are misclassified.
Objectives: This article describes the epidemiology, pathophysiology, clinical features and management of dengue. It also explores
the implications of infection with this flavivirus for Nigeria, and similar countries.
Methods: The literature search for publications on dengue in West Africa was performed using PubMed, African Journals Online
(AJOL), Google Scholar, Web of Science, databases and grey literature to identify all published papers regarding the topic.
A snowballing strategy was adopted to identify additional publications.
Results: Recent reports suggest that dengue is a growing public health problem in Nigeria, the magnitude of which needs to be
more clearly defined. Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa has an abundance of the Aedes aegypti mosquito which is
known to transmit dengue, Zika, as well as chikungunya (CHIKV) and West Nile viruses.
Conclusion: This article provides practical suggestions for strengthening the dengue virus control programme in Nigeria. The
Nigerian health system shares similarities with health systems in many other sub-Saharan countries. Therefore, the practical suggestions
provided at the end of this review are likely to be applicable to many other African countries.
Keywords: Dengue fever update, Nigeria, review.