WA boy, 9, dies after mosquito bite on family holiday

A nine-year-old boy from Western Australia has reportedly died after being bitten by a mosquito while on holiday in the Philippines with his family.

The Pulgadas family were just two weeks into a five-week holiday when young Glenn developed symptoms of Dengue fever, a mosquito-borne viral disease, the ABC reported.

He deteriorated rapidly and was admitted to an intensive care unit at the Madonna and Child Hospital on the Philippines island of Mindanao, but died on August 25 due to organ failure.

Glenn Pulgadas with his parents Ryza and Glenn Pulgadas
Nine-year-old Glenn Pulgadas was in the Philippines with his parents Ryza and Glenn Pulgadas. when he suddenly fell ill. Source: Facebook

Medical records seen by the ABC described Glenn as being "weak in appearance". He also suffered from a high fever, headaches, abdominal pain, vomiting and nose bleeds.

The young boy reportedly experienced dengue shock syndrome, which caused his organs to shut down and ultimately caused his death.

Ryza Pulgadas said her son "was a sweet, caring, bright, bubbly, young boy." He was "so full of life and always had a smile on his face," she said.

Local community step up to help family

The family plan to return to Western Australia, where they've lived for almost half a decade. But Glenn will be laid to rest in the Philippines, his mum said.

The Harvey community has rallied around the heartbroken family and has started a GoFundMe page with hopes to raise enough money to cover funeral costs.

"As a community, we would like to support his Mum and Dad with medical and funeral costs," the fundraiser page says.

"Glenn was a bright, bubbly, young boy who was so full of life and always had a smile on his face."

The boy was bitten by a mosquito and died from dengue fever. Source: Facebook
The boy was bitten by a mosquito and died from dengue fever. Source: Facebook

Increase of dengue cases worldwide

Dengue is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected mosquitoes and there is no specific treatment, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The number of dengue cases reported to WHO has increased drastically over the last two decades, from 505,430 cases in 2000, to over 2.4 million in 2010.

In 2019 there had been 5.2 million cases reported, of which 420,000 were in the Philippines.

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