KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 11 – Authorities have discovered the first ever case of dengue fever spread through sex.
A 41-year-old man from Madrid, Spain, contracted dengue after having sex with his male partner, who picked up the virus from a mosquito bite during a trip to Cuba.
“His partner presented the same symptoms as him but lighter around ten days earlier, and he had previously visited Cuba and the Dominican Republic,” said Susana Jimenez of the Madrid region’s public health department, according to The Telegraph.
“An analysis of their sperm was carried out and it revealed that not only did they have dengue but that it was exactly the same virus which circulates in Cuba.”
The man had never travelled to a country where the disease is common.
The Stockholm-based European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), which monitors health and disease in Europe, also confirmed the case, saying that this was “to our knowledge, the first sexual transmission of the dengue virus among men who have sex with men.”
In the 1970s the flu-like virus was endemic in just nine countries.
But now the disease is found in more than 100 countries, with roughly half of the world’s population at risk.