An outbreak of Paederus sabaeus rove beetles in Kenya during the 1997-1998 El Niño resulted in a dramatic increase of vesicular dermatitis in its capital Nairobi. The beetle, popularly called ‘Nairobi Fly’, contains a potent toxic fluid that causes epidermolysis and acute conjunctivitis. A cross-sectional epidemiological study involving 1,208 Nairobi residents was conducted to determine the health impact of this outbreak. The results showed that one-third of the Nairobi population were infected during this period. The majority of the respondents reported lesions on exposed body parts above the shoulders. Disfiguring, painful blisters and skin rashes in and around the facial area had a strong personal and social impact. Policy makers and public health specialists need to recognize that outbreaks of insects of medical importance resulting from global climatic events require urgent remedial action.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Climate Change and Africa|
|Publisher||Cambridge University Press|
|Number of pages||8|
|State||Published - Jan 1 2005|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)