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The tiger mosquito is extremely aggressive and carries many serious diseases. Although its natural habitat is the southern regions of Asia, it is also more and more often found in Europe. Now it has reached the Czech Republic, and therefore very close to our country. It is worth knowing if the tiger mosquito also appeared in Poland and what it can pose a threat to us.

The tiger mosquitooccurs in Southeast Asia and is the so-called a vector, i.e. an organism that carries parasites or infectious microorganisms. Therefore, it can cause many tropical diseases.

The tiger mosquito first appeared in southern Europe in 1975 and systematically moved to the north and west of the continent.

Probably the tiger mosquito got to the Old Continent in used car tires that were transported from Asia. There was water in the cavities of the tires, so the tiger mosquitoes had the conditions to reproduce. Asian mosquitoes also spread thanks to imported tropical plants.

The latest data from 2022 indicate that the tiger mosquito is already in our southern neighbors - the Czechs. Some sources say that in the Czech Republic - possibly after a tiger mosquito bite - one person died of dengue fever (she had not been to a country where this disease is endemic before).

Tiger mosquito in Poland

There is no presence of a tiger mosquito in Poland. However, the speed at which it is spreading suggests that it may also appear in our country.

The tiger mosquito prefers a warm and humid climate, i.e. the one in South Asia. However, global warming and tropical temperatures during the holiday season in Poland may encourage tiger mosquitoes to settle in our country.

Map of tiger mosquito occurrence

Tiger mosquito - how to recognize it? What does it look like?

The tiger mosquitohas distinctive black and white stripes all over its body that resemble tiger stripes (hence the name). These insects, depending on the conditions in which they live, reach a length of 2 to 10 mm. Females are larger than males by approx. 20%. They are most active in the early morning and late afternoon.

Tiger mosquito - symptomsbites

After a tiger mosquito bite, the same symptoms appear as after our native mosquito bite, i.e. itchy blister. However, excessive local reactions after mosquito bites are becoming more common. These are itchy and then aching and burning extensive erythematous skin lesions.

The most vulnerable to allergic reactions after mosquito bites are young children and infants, people with reduced immunity, chronic diseases, as well as people traveling to countries where there are different species of mosquitoes than in the country they inhabited before.

Tiger mosquito - what diseases does it carry?

  • yellow fever- also known as yellow fever, is a disease that can be asymptomatic, in severe cases leading to liver failure and kidney failure, and even death. Common symptoms include fever, headache, chills, nausea, weakness, yellowing of the skin and reddening of the conjunctiva
  • West Nile fever- the infection is manifested by fever lasting 3-6 days with typical accompanying symptoms (headache, weakness, skin rash on the trunk and upper limbs without itching, enlargement of the nodes lymphatics). 1% of those infected have a very severe disease, with meningitis and / or encephalitis
  • Japanese encephalitis- in most cases the disease is asymptomatic or with mild flu-like symptoms (fever, headaches, gastrointestinal disorders). About 1% are severe, with symptoms from the central nervous system (encephalitis, meningeal symptoms, consciousness disorders, paresis)
  • Zika fever- caused by the Zika virus. Most people are infected without symptoms. However, some people may experience: moderate fever, headache, macular or papular rash, pain in muscles and joints, especially in the smaller ones, e.g. hands or feet, joint swelling, conjunctivitis. A mosquito bite carrying the zika virus in pregnant women causes microcephaly
  • Chikungunya fever- the first phase of the disease is acute, sudden infection, the second phase, which most patients experience, is chronic polyarticular lesions. Characteristic symptoms are fever up to 39 degrees C, headache, photophobia, conjunctivitis, rash, severe pain in joints and muscles or arthritis
  • Dengue fever- Dengue fever. It is characterized by an acute onset with fever, headaches, joint and muscle pains. The fever drops after 2-4 days. After a few to a dozen or so hours, a second feverish period takes place, lasting 1-2 hoursdays. A maculopapular rash then appears, initially affecting the backs of the arms and legs, later spreading to the limbs and torso, rarely involving the face
  • equine encephalitis- first, nonspecific symptoms such as headache, fever, weakness, nausea, and vomiting appear that last for several days. Then symptoms from the central nervous system join - disturbance of consciousness, confusion, drowsiness, stupor, coma with seizures and stiff neck, as well as symptoms of palsy of the cranial nerves

Treatment in all cases is to relieve symptoms.

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