Thursday, October 02, 2008


I think maybe I am not meant to ever see Les Cayes. Last night Troy went nutty on us. That meant canceling our trip south today. Instead we took him for lab work and then while he slept in Pat and Randy's air-conditioned hotel room, we ran some errands.

Long time readers will remember that Troy, Tara, and Britt all took a turn with Dengue Fever in 2006. We collectively believe that it might be one of the only times we have ever wished for death (out loud) due to pain and discomfort. It is Malaria's unattractive and much more punishing cousin.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne illness. You can really only confirm Dengue Fever by sending blood to the CDC in Atlanta (at least for the true documented "this counts to the world" confirmation).

You might be thinking, hey - she sure does seem to diagnose as though she has gone to 4 years of med school or something --- but the truth is, the symptoms make it easy to guess and an uneducated dolt who has some personal experience knows more than one would think.

Troy's symptoms are almost exactly what he had in 2006 - right now he is entering day two of the fever stage with spiking 103 fevers. When the fever subsides you feel tired but mostly normal for a few hours here and there. His mouth has a metal taste and he has bad back/neck pain. The Haitians call this "the fever that breaks the bones". The key will be watching him the first days after the fevers subside. That is actually the critical time. (Afebrile phase) The entire disease takes about 10 days to run its course. We're digging in now.

The World Health Organization offers this piece of stellar encouragement:

There is no specific treatment for dengue fever.

and ...

Infected humans are the main carriers and multipliers of the virus, serving as a source of the virus for uninfected mosquitoes. The virus circulates in the blood of infected humans for two to seven days, at approximately the same time that they have a fever; Aedes mosquitoes may acquire the virus when they feed on an individual during this period.

We have spoken with our Doctor friend (hey Jen!) and she has given us good advice. We have offers from our peeps in Florida (hey Luke & Addy!) to house Troy should he decide he needs some comforts of the developed world ... or if anything suddenly goes south with him. For now we are taking it a few hours at a time and praying for this to pass with the least pain possible. We truly need prayers for protection from infection of anyone else in this house. Also, if you're able to work magic with a calendar and you could please help us wake up to October 12 tomorrow, that would be super-terrific. Thank you for praying for my sweet Troy-boy.

Photo: Malaria Control Sign © otisarchives2