I just arrived home to Canada from India on Saturday evening . During my 3 week stay, I was in Delhi, Agra, Chandigarh, Amritsar, Solan and Shimla. While in Delhi my first week there I must have had about 500 or more mosquito bites on my arms, legs, face, even my back sides etc even though I was using mosquito cream (Odomos I think itw as called) and had a repellent plugged in all the time.
At night they were merciless. The bites were so bad that I had an allergic reaction to them and my friend who I was staying with (who is a Doctor) put me on an anti histamine and prednisone to combat the excessive itching and reaction. That was the first week I was there. During the last few days of my stay, I developed a fever and lack of appetite, along with headache and general aches. I did not have vomiting or diarrhea etc. No coughing, stuffed nose etc. The fever went away by the evening of the same day after taking Motrin. That was approx 5 days ago. Since then, I still do not have an appetite. It’s like I can’t eat more than a few bites. I am extremely tired all the time (although that could be jet lag) and though I have not been able to check my temperature again since then, I have had several times where I got very flushed and had ‘forehead sweats’ and suspected my temp might be up again. I had been thinking I picked up a virus of some sort but with all the mosquito bites I endured a few weeks ago I am a little worried.
My question is, during Oct / Mid Nov, in New Delhi is Malaria (and also Dengue fever) a risk enough that I should be checked? I read that several people in Oct had been diagnosed carrying both Dengue AND Malaria concurrently in Delhi. Are there any signs that I should look for that would maybe differentiate a simple viral bug from possible Malaria?
Again, my symptoms are lack of appetite, fever that seems to come and go (although only once was confirmed fever as my Dr friend had a thermometer) after that just intermittent bouts of sweating etc that I think may have been fever, along with aches and headache. None of it is severe though… its all pretty mild symptoms. Even the confirmed fever was only 99.9 so it wasn’t a high fever.
Thanks for your response.
Sorry to hear of your troubles. Malaria is prevalent in all parts of India except at very high altitudes. Since you had many bites and were not taking chemical prophylaxis (pills), I would advise you get a simple blood test for malaria to rule that out. Dengue can also be tested for, usually within 5 days of the acute illness or convalescence (it does’t sound like you have it to me). Next time you travel, check with the CDC (www.cdc.gov) as they have very thorough travel advise for malarial areas, including what to take for prophylaxis and how to prevent mosquito bites.