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Revista Cubana de Medicina Tropical

Print version ISSN 0375-0760On-line version ISSN 1561-3054


ARISMENDI-MORILLO, Gabriel et al. Clinical and pathological correlation in fatal dengue cases found in Maracaibo, Venezuela. Rev Cubana Med Trop [online]. 2011, vol.63, n.1, pp.44-51. ISSN 0375-0760.

INTRODUCTION: given the importance of dengue in America, it is indispensable to know the cause of death of the infected people and to evaluate the few necropsy studies available. OBJECTIVE: to describe and to analyze the relevant clinical and pathological findings in fatal dengue cases of dengue in a Venezuelan endemic area. METHODS: eight fatal cases, according to clinical and epidemiological dengue criteria and/or confirmed by complete serological tests were studied after complete clinical necropsy. The tissues were processed by standard histopathological techniques. RESULTS: all these cases showed severe lung disease (diffuse alveolar damage, non cardiogenic pulmonary edema, thromboembolism, bronchopneumonia, pneumonitis, intralveolar hemorrhage). Six presented with pleural or abdominal effusion. Focal hepatic necrosis was found in two cases. The cause of death was related to respiratory failure in six cases secondary to lung disease; two with hypovolemic shock, and one developed liver failure. CONCLUSIONS: the studied dengue cases showed fatal severe pulmonary compromise leading to death, unlike those reported in other studies of autopsies in The Americas. They also developed multiple organ failure, which in most cases led to death not directly associated to hypovolemic shock. These findings in autopsies will allow designing therapeutic strategies to avoid mortality.

Keywords : dengue; dengue hemorrhagic fever; dengue shock syndrome; autopsy.

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