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Tokyo closes park seen as local source of dengue

TOKYO, JAPAN - AUGUST 28: A workman sprays pesticide in Yoyogi Park on August 28, 2014 in Tokyo, Japan. Sections of Yoyogi Park were closed to the public today as they underwent  fumigation after three people were diagnosed with dengue fever after suffering mosquitoe bites in the park. According to a Health Ministry statement, these were the first domestic cases of dengue fever in Japan in 70 years.  (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images) (Chris McGrath, 2014 Getty Images)
Japan Copes With First Dengue Fever Case In Nearly 70 Years (Chris McGrath, 2014 Getty Images)
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Updated: 9/05 6:20 am

TOKYO (AP) — A popular park in downtown Tokyo has been closed temporarily after dozens of cases of dengue fever were contracted by people who visited the area.

Health minister Yasuhisa Shiozaki on Friday urged the public to remain calm, but said all local governments would be given guidelines on how to identify and handle dengue, which is spread only by mosquitoes.

Dengue is endemic in much of tropical Asia and there are dozens of cases brought back to Japan each year, but health officials recently confirmed the first locally transmitted cases in 65 years. As of Thursday, the number of infections was reported at 55.

Dengue causes symptoms including fever, severe joint pain and headaches. There is no treatment, and some of those infected can suffer from severe and life-threatening bleeding.


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