Dengue fever increases by 70 percent in U.S. in 2012

The number of dengue fever cases in the United States in 2012 increased by 70 percent, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

There were 357 cases of the mosquito-borne viral disease in the U.S. in 2012, up from 251 cases reported in 2011. Florida was the state with the highest number of cases with 104 dengue cases, an increase from 66 cases the previous year. Other high ranking states included New York with 64 and California with 35, the Global Dispatch reports.

Most of the cases of dengue fever were imported, though some in Florida were locally acquired.

There were 4,450 reported dengue cases in 2012 in the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico, a major increase from the 1,507 cases reported there in 2011, the Global Dispatch reports.

According to the CDC, dengue is transferred by the bite of an Aedes mosquito that is infected with one of four closely related dengue viruses. Symptoms of dengue fever include severe headache, joint pain, muscle and bone pain, rash, high fever, severe pain behind the eyes and mild bleeding. There is no specific medication to treat dengue infections and patients should rest, drink plenty of fluids and consult a doctor.