Sip the Blood and Suck the Life

Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever is a severe, potentially deadly infection spread by certain species of mosquitoes (Aedes aegypti).



Four different dengue viruses are known to cause dengue hemorrhagic fever. Dengue hemorrhagic fever occurs when a person catches a different type dengue virus after being infected by another one sometime before. Prior immunity to a different dengue virus type plays an important role in this severe disease.


Early symptoms of dengue hemorrhagic fever are similar to those of dengue fever, but after several days the patient becomes irritable, restless, and sweaty. These symptoms are followed by a shock-like state.

Bleeding may appear as tiny spots of blood on the skin (petechiae) and larger patches of blood under the skin ecchymosis). Minor injuries may cause bleeding.

Shock may cause death. If the patient survives, recovery begins after a one-day crisis period.

Early symptoms include:

  • Decreased appetite
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Abdominal pain
  • Body malaise
  • Myalgia
  • Arthralgia
  • Vomiting

Acute phase symptoms include:

  • Restlessness followed by ecchymosis, generalized rash, petechiae, and worsening of earlier symptoms
  • Shock-like state (cold, clammy extremities and diaphoresis)


  • Encephalopathy
  • Cardiac problems
  • Liver damage
  • Residual brain damage
  • Seizures
  • Shock


Because Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever is caused by a virus for which there is no known cure or vaccine yet, the only treatment is to treat the symptoms.

  • A transfusion of blood products specifically platelets or plasma can correct bleeding problems
  • Intravenous fluids and electrolytes are also used to correct electrolyte imbalances
  • Oxygen therapy may be needed to treat abnormally low blood oxygen
  • Rehydration with intravenous fluids is often necessary to treat dehydration
  • Supportive care in an intensive care unit/environment



I am posting these essential sets of information in relation to the death of my patient. His life was suddenly seized by this traitor. The virus that Aedes aegypti mosquitoes carry is really alarming and should not be taken for granted. Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever has been one of the crucial problems of our health sector since time immemorial. Several people from different parts of the globe especially innocent children have already been tormented by this ailment. Everyone is ought to be aware; everyone should be informed because this kind of case is no joke.

Pertaining to the aforementioned patient who lost his life at a very young age due to DHF, we (my colleagues and I) have provided utmost care and effort for the child to recuperate as soon as possible. We have done our duties as registered nurses to render the holistic needs of the patient. We have provided the necessary care that he needed for him to recover. Seconds and minutes have passed by. The time came when I had my two-day off and I didn’t know what was already transpiring inside the hospital. I had no single idea if the patients I handled were still confined or were already discharged. All along, I thought everything will be positive as I left him.  Suddenly and few days after, a colleague of mine sent me a message telling that patient XY already passed away. It is so heartrending to know that the child you treated with quality nursing care and who has shown hope to survive will be gone in a snap. I was totally taken aback with that news. I believe, he is happy where he is now and I know that he is watching over us from now on.

Despite the emotional attachment that is established between nurses and patients, we, nurses should always be prepared when this kind of scenario comes into picture. We should always bear in our minds that in spite of the care that we render, there are things beyond our control. In a split-second, lives can vanish. In a split-second, hopes can annihilate. In a split-second, a child’s smile can quickly turn into a mere memory.

Hopefully, this story will serve to be a fruitful lesson. Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever should be addressed painstakingly. People particularly children do not deserve to suffer this kind of illness. Let us all be aware of the causes, signs and symptoms, treatment, and prevention of DHF. To all the parents out there, take good care of your children. Don’t let a single mosquito bite take away their precious lives.



Drexel Heinz Magpantay Cruz, RN, RM

Article Contributor and Essayist for the ff. companies:

Definitely Filipino and Nursing Guide Philippines

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About Drexel Heinz Cruz 4 Articles
THE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH 1. I am rational, dynamic, responsible, insightful, and perfectionist. 2. I detest people who are narrow-minded, prejudiced, pretentious, callous, and double-dealers. 3. I can easily adapt to any kind of environment. 4. I always give everyone the benefit of the doubt during confrontations and discourses. It always runs in my mind. I don't verbalize it. 5. I exist in this cosmos fearless of other people's shadows and at times fearful of my own. 6. I laugh with my friends like there is no tomorrow. The manner I deliver my antics is beyond compare. Humor is my stress-reliever. 7. I, without doubts, utter that failure and rejection are two things that make me fretful. 8. I am proud of what I have become despite the upheavals that ensued and the mistakes that I have done. 9. I always hunger for excellence and learning. Mediocrity is not in my vocabulary. 10. I am aware that without God, my family, and my friends, I am nothing. Without them, I metaphorically am a boat in a desert. CHANGE, CHANCE, CHOICE. That is life's inescapable cycle. And that's how I maneuver life.
  • Anonymous

    Thanks for this post. My grandchild has just been hospitalized for dengue, and is now in the province to recuperate, and yes, I was told that she will easily bleed when injured, so, hopefully, she will recover fully. My concern is, the school she attends, (private) apparently have 7 pupils and a teacher with the same case, yet it still remains open. I have 4 grandchildren in the same school and cannot afford 30k pesos for everytime for their treatment.

    • We can help you by conducting dengue awareness seminar in that school. Contact us ASAP at Tel. +632 484-0208.

      • John

        Do you conduct Larval survey?

        • John

          do you conduct entomological survey and investigation to identify the density of the mosquito?

          • We have been doing that [larval/ pupal counts directly in their breeding media and adult counts in various ways] as part of our mosquito eradication program… first, to establish their initial population density before treatment will be conducted; then during the actual treatment [to find out and monitor if the treatment is the proper/ right one and to check the efficacy of the chemical being used]; and finally, to find out if the treatment has successfully eradicated the target mosquitoes through lowering down the initial population density counts…

  • Anonymous

    sabi nmn nila vitamin c daw panlaban,,

  • shheilla

    our place (Tuding, Itogon, Benguet) had been found out to be a positive breeding sites of Dengue..unfortunately, 1 infant had been dead already. others were rushed to diff. hospitals one after the other with the same case. but it seems the DOH baguio is still not doing anything to at least lessen the fast spread of it. We have been doing any precautions we know but this would not be enough to eradicate the disease..

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the Post… Pa share po so that others will know… Keep up the good work… Mabuhay po kayo…God Bless!

  • Anonymous

    Vitamin C is used to boost your immune system. Euphorbia hirta (TAWA-TAWA or GATAS-GATAS) is also effective in increasing your platelet count (can also be used for colds, cough or flu)though it's still under investigation (of its effectiveness).

    JUST FOLLOW D-E-N-G-U-E.. refer to

    • After the 4 S, now DENGUE… DOH is hysterical because it has not come up yet with the vaccine against the viruses that cause dengue fever, dengue hemorrhagic fever and dengue shock syndrome and it has not even studied to verify the claims of some quarters that herbal plants like tawa-tawa, etc. can cure the disease!

      • John

        It is very hard to develop a vaccine for Dengue. We have to put in mind that dengue has 4 strain and its mutating. Even in the first world country they don’t have any Dengue Type 1,2,3 and 4 vaccine. If only, IEC on Epidemiology of Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever is very essential, community cooperation, inter-agency coordination and political will plays a very vital role.

  • Anonymous


    • Yes, like the DOH, they want us to become hysterical too!

  • Anonymous
  • Anonymous

    thanks for posting this.. can i share with it? so some of my friends will be inform…thanks

  • Drexel Cruz

    Yes, please share the information. Thank you for your comments.

    • Red

      Thank you for this very informative article. I only hope that I had read this article prior to being infected with Dengue. Having this illness is really a dreadful experience. No wonder why many children suffer and die because of this. At first I thought it is just an ordinary flu, yet things got worst and I even vomited blood. Good thing I was fully hydrated if not, I no longer know what had happened to me. Kudos to the Nurses and medical staff of the Medical center where I was confined I admire and owe them a lot for their care and unparalleled sense of professionalism, care and compassion. That was just last year (Oct-2011) and the pain is really traumatic. The bottom line is that, early prevention and diagnosis will save your life. Please share this Article… to help educate and save more lives. (Red,21)

  • Marilyn Rubio Muscat

    Goood job Mr.D H Cruz. I found your article very informative. So touched by your concerned on Dengue.

    I would like to ask a favor from you if you could help me gather more information about Dengue picture aided materials/ format in power point presentation which includes symptoms, pictures of places most likely dengue carrier mosquitoes thrives.

    I live abroad and I will be in our country this Christmas (December hopefully). I would like to share my time to be of voluntary service outreach information about Dengue to my hometown in the southern part of Mindanao. That it is my plan to conduct short talk/lectures on small group using computer aided visual presentation about Dengue. I believe visual aided works effectively to my people in my hometown.

    Lat 2006, during our visit to our country, my husband was also infected with dengue. I had to rushed him to Silliman Medical Center. He stayed there for more than a week, his platelets was very low and he was given blood transfusion and he was able to recover.Though he was under immaculate medical care, my family used to gave him water theraphy using gatas- gatas herbal drink.

    My husband and I would like to share our time to impart information drive about Dengue to my peole in the South. I hope you can help me on this.

    More power to you. Cheers and Mabuhay!

    • John

      Hi, do you still need some info about Dengue fever? just in case I have some…..

    • marilyn rubio muscat

      Hi!Thanks for your reply. Yes, pls do forward me those informations. Well appreciated. Keep up the good work.
      Marilyn R Muscat.

      • John

        where and how can I possibly send you the info? powerpoint Presentations?

        • marilyn rubio muscat

          Sir, thanks for the immediate reply. You can send me the infos on my email wish im in our country but I live abroad right now im in Malta, Europe and do visit my hometown on yearly basis only. my email add: [email protected]
          Hopefully, When i be back again in our native land I will be able to share my time with my people in my village to share this knowledge.
          Whilst thanking you a lot and More Power to yu Sir.
          Kind regards, Marilyn

          • John

            I sent you and email via the address that you gave in the above info but haven’t receive any reply, was confuse if that’s really your email add where I’m going to send the presentation.

  • The National Committee on Urban Pest Control [2461 Arellano Avenue, Malate, Manila; Tel. No. +632 484-0208; E-Mail Address: [email protected]; and Website:] has a team of experienced entomologists that conducts Dengue Awareness Seminar nationwide.

    If you’re interested to have the team conducted dengue awareness in your barangay, community, group, etc., contact us ASAP.

    All you have to prepare is the venue that could accommodate your participants and inform us at least a week ahead.

    The seminar is delivered using a powerpoint presentation and supplemented by demonstrations on how to prepare your own ovi-traps or adult mosquito traps. It is good for 2 hours.

    There are a lot of preventive measures, many are practical based on mosquito’s characteristics, behavior and biology, that shall be taken up and discussed that the government authorities, DOH in particular, have failed to do because mosquito control/ prevention is not their expertise or turf!

  • A day before we conduct the dengue awareness seminar in your barangay, community, group, etc., allow us first to conduct the physical inspection of the area to seize up the problem, and collect samples of mosquito to characterize them.

    • These will help us design a dengue awareness seminar that is based on your present situation/s.