Informaçãos Turística

Lucete Fortes

Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever DHF

in Cape Verde

by Dr. Pitt Reitmaier specialist in tropical hygiene and public health

2009: Dengue-outbreak on the southern island of the Cape Verde Archipelago

For the first time in history,starting in September 2009, an epdemic of a hemorrhagic fever spread on the leeward (southern) group of islands, Santiago, Maio, Fogo and Brava. On 22 Oct 2009 Dengue-virus Serotyp-3 was identified (Institut Pasteur - Dakar - Senegal). In total 20914 cases were registered by the health services, 174 developed the severe, hemorrhagic form of the disease and 6 patients came to death. (latest in 04.11.2009).

Dengue is an arbovirus, means it is transmitted by arthropods, the mosquito Stegomyia (formerly aedes) wich also transmits Chikungunya, Yellow Fever, West-Nile-Fever, Zika-Virua and otheres. This mosquito does breed in very small sweet-water pockets like flour pots, tins, bottles, plastic bottles, empty tetrapacks and tyres and it can even breed in polluted water. This makes it a civilization-follower, hard to contol in poor urban environment, where garbage collection continues insufficient. Climate change and mass-tourism help to spread it to moderate climate zones where mosquitoes have started their adaptation to cooler temperatures. .

Geographic center of the epidemic

was the countries capital, City of Praia on Santiago island with the highest number of cases, nevertheless, the smaller city of São Filipe auf Fogo showed even higher incidence rates (new cases per 1000 inhab.) The southern islands Santiago, Fogo und Maio were the strongholds of lokal transmission, while Brava on the northern islands Sal, Boa Vista und São Nicolau very few important and authochonous cases were reported and the islands of São Vicente and Santo Antão remained free of authochonous transmission.
The Dengue-Epidemic did no affect the beach-tourism islands Sal and Boa Vista at any time!

since 2010: Dengue-Fever under control on the Cape Verde islands

With the beginning of the rainy season mosquito-control and preventive measures are intensified and monitored. Of 80 suspected cases (August - Oktober 2010, all of of them on Santiago-island) 12 were confirmed by lab-test as Dengue. Severe forms and lethal cases did not occur. In 2011 the numbers were even lower and only singular cases confirmed in the labs. 2012 there were no cases. In May 2013 one iported case was registed. Because of the Dengue- and Chikungunya Epidemic in Brazil in 2015 and the Zika-Outbreak iin 2015/16, mosquito control was further intensified. This includes the spaying of passenger- and cargo-compartments of airplanes.

January 2017: Autochtonous cases confirmed in the city of Praia

The Mosquito-Control Programme is intensified on 09 01 2017 in City of Praia on Santiago island. Three new cases of December 2016 were confirmed as Dengue by serological tests (Institut Pasteur - Dakar - Senegal) and comunicated to the press on 06 01 2017. It is the same Serotyp 3 as in 2009.
As of 31 01 2017, 23 cases were confirmed. Less than half of them serolöogically proofed as Dengue SeroType 3.


Dengue is back to Cidade da Praia (Insel Santiago). From the other islands no cases are reported.

Good part of the population continues immune against Serotype 3. Susceptability is reduced and an as massive epidemic as in 2009 is not expected.

Hämorrhagic, severe disease was not observed so far and is not expected in higher incidence.

For individuals without previous Dengue-3 infection, the risks are higher than for the local population.
For indiviudals with previous Dengue other than serotype 3 infection, the risk of hemorrhagic complications is increased.

(Status of Information 12 02 2017)


- avoid mosquito-bites

see also:: Zika-Virus in Cape Verde

All information to the best of our knowledge and belief - No warranty !
For individual recommendation, please contact your physician!

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updated: 13.06.20