Knowledge and preventive practices regarding dengue in an urban area of Palakkad

Sreedevi Chakkanmattil, Shilu M. Zachariah, Deepak Kuttikatt Soman, Jayalekha J. J., Athira K. P., Marie J. Naina


Background: Dengue is the most rapidly spreading viral disease in the world. Kerala had reported high incidence of dengue cases recently including deaths. Integrated vector management is the most effective method of vector control which requires community participation. As high incidence of dengue cases are reported in Palakkad district, it is imperative to assess the knowledge level and preventive practices followed by the community. This will help to formulate further action plans including awareness creation and behaviour change.

Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted in two randomly selected wards of Palakkad municipality from July to August 2017. An adult from each household was interviewed using a semi-structured questionnaire. The household and its surroundings were also observed to identify breeding sources and calculate relevant vector indices.

Results: 95.9% of informants knew that dengue is transmitted through bite of infected mosquito. 67.8% felt that dengue mosquito bites during the daytime. 53.0% of the families observed dry day practices. 15.8% used mosquito repellent creams and only 25.9% used mosquito nets. The house index, container index and breteau index were found to be 24.60%, 23.55% and 33.43% respectively.

Conclusions: The awareness regarding modes of transmission and biting time of Aedes mosquito is good but the usage of personal protective measures is quite low. Although majority of the respondents had knowledge about breeding places, there were significant numbers of breeding sources especially plastic containers. Vector indices were also high indicating risk of transmission of dengue.


Dengue, Knowledge, Preventive practices, Vector index

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