COVID-19 vs Dengue: How to Differentiate the Cause of Fever

Know how to differentiate between COVID and dengue symptoms.

Health News
3 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>Here's how you can tell dengue and COVID-19 apart.</p></div>

According to the reports published in the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the symptoms of dengue and COVID-19 are so similar that it becomes a challenge to diagnose or treat the patient. It has become important that we take a few steps to avoid the co-infection and know the predominant symptoms of both the diseases.

Every year we witness a spike in malaria and dengue cases, add to that mix, COVID-19, and it can lead to cases of wrong diagnosis and treatment which might worsen the case. That is why it becomes important to know the difference between the symptoms of dengue fever and COVID-19.


What is Co-infection?

India has already been battling the deadly COVID-19 virus since January, 2019. Now, with an increase in cases of dengue fever across much of North India, and it brings immense pressure on the health care system. There have been a few cases where a patient has been co-infected. Co-infection is simply a condition when you are infected by two or more diseases at the same time.

It is important to take preventive measures when we are witnessing a rise in dengue or malaria cases during the monsoon.

Differences between Dengue fever and COVID-19

Do you know the different symptoms for dengue, COVID-19 and malaria?
Do you know the different symptoms for dengue, COVID-19 and malaria?
(Photo: FIT)

Dengue fever is caused due to the flavivirus, also known as dengue virus. There are four types of dengue virus, and the predominant ones in India are type1 and type 4. Type 3 is witnessed rarely in certain parts of the country.

Dengue fever is characterised by high grade fever up to 104 to 105 degree Fahrenheit accompanied by body ache, head ache and back ache. The patient may suffer from severe head ache and body ache along with a few digestive problems like bloating and vomiting. The temperature may rise to an extent that the normal paracetamol might not make any difference.


The fever during COVID may not be continuous and responds well to medicines like paracetamol. Predominant symptoms may include cough, loss of breath, loss of taste and smell and other respiratory problems. The most differentiating symptom in the dengue patients is flushed skin and fever up to 5 days.

Since dengue is a viral fever, there is no proper treatment or vaccine for it. The doctors make sure that the patient is well-hydrated, provide them with supportive treatment, keep an eye on the platelets and try to avoids any further complications.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>Dengue vs Scrub Typhus</p></div>

Dengue vs Scrub Typhus

(Graphics by FIT)

Dengue Shock Syndrome

There are mainly two types of dengue fever - simple or uncomplicated dengue fever and dengue shock-syndrome. Patients suffering from simple dengue fever can be taken care of at home, but patients who get dengue shock-syndrome need to be admitted to a hospital.

Dengue fever has high mortality rate. That is why it is better to consult a doctor if there are any complications or warning signs.

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