In what is possibly the world’s first case of dengue being transmitted through sex, health authorities in Spain confirmed a man contracted the virus from his male partner.
According to a report in The Telegraph, a 41-year-old man from Madrid had sex with his male partner who was tested positive for dengue after a trip to Cuba.
“His partner presented the same symptoms as him but lighter around ten days earlier, and he had previously visited Cuba and the Dominican Republic,” Susana Jimenez of the Madrid region’s public health department told The Telegraph.
“An analysis of their sperm was carried out and it revealed that not only did they have dengue but that it was exactly the same virus which circulates in Cuba.”
The case had initially perplexed doctors as the man did not travel to a country where dengue is prevalent.
The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) told news agency AFP that the was “to our knowledge, the first sexual transmission of the dengue virus among men who have sex with men.”
A similar case of dengue reportedly transmitted between a man and a woman through sex was recently the subject of a scientific article in South Korea.
Dengue is transmitted mainly through the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, which thrives in tropical climates. The virus causes high fever, headache and vomiting. Thousands of people from South East Asia, Africa and countries with hotter climates die every year and millions are infected.