yellow fever


Definition of yellow fever

: an acute infectious disease that is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa and tropical South America, is marked by symptoms (such as fever, muscle pain, and headache) of sudden onset which typically resolve within a few days but are sometimes followed by more serious symptoms (such as jaundice, high fever, and hemorrhage), and is caused by a flavivirus (species Yellow fever virus of the genus Flavivirus) transmitted especially by the yellow-fever mosquito

Examples of yellow fever in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The insects have been responsible for countless deaths by spreading illnesses such as malaria and yellow fever. Jim Kiest,, "12 new books for your summer reading list," 5 June 2019 As yellow fever and other infectious diseases spread along the Eastern Seaboard, every port city built a similar quarantine station outside its boundaries. Inga Saffron,, "This building on the Delaware River saved immigrant lives for 95 years. Now it’s been rescued by Tinicum Twp. | Inga Saffron," 4 June 2019 Those variants, or others, might also work for reducing threats of spreading Zika and yellow fever, Vosshall and Matthews said. Malcolm Ritter, The Seattle Times, "Science Says: Why scientists prize plant, animal genomes," 3 Apr. 2019 For instance, mass immunization campaigns targeting common diseases like polio, measles, and yellow fever are super-effective ways to prevent disease and save lives. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "Billionaires are spending their fortunes reshaping America’s schools. It isn’t working.," 30 Oct. 2018 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which has long urged travelers to Brazil to get yellow fever shots, issued a report Friday amid a surge of illnesses near major cities. Washington Post, "Yellow fever shots urged for Brazil travelers amid outbreak," 16 Mar. 2018 New Orleans' 1905 outbreak is considered the last yellow fever outbreak in the United States. Mike Scott,, "How Dr. Walter Reed became a New Orleans hero," 14 Apr. 2018 Last year, authorities launched a big campaign against yellow fever, which spiked after several years of relatively low numbers of cases. Beatrice Christofaro, The Seattle Times, "Brazil rushes to thwart measles outbreak from Venezuelans," 6 Aug. 2018 After, both her parents died during a yellow fever epidemic in 1878, Wells returned home to take care of her siblings. Deneen L. Brown, Washington Post, "‘Fearless’ Ida B. Wells honored by new lynching museum for fighting racial terror," 26 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'yellow fever.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of yellow fever

1738, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for yellow fever

Last Updated

10 Jun 2019

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The first known use of yellow fever was in 1738

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More Definitions for yellow fever

yellow fever


English Language Learners Definition of yellow fever

medical : a serious disease that causes fever and often yellowing of the skin and that is passed from one person to another especially by the bite of mosquitoes

yellow fever


Kids Definition of yellow fever

: a disease carried by mosquitoes in parts of Africa and South America

yellow fever


Medical Definition of yellow fever

: an infectious disease of sudden onset that is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa and tropical South America and includes acute symptoms (as fever, muscle pain, headache, and nausea) which typically resolve within a few days but are sometimes followed by more serious symptoms (as jaundice, abdominal pain, high fever, hemorrhage, and kidney impairment) which may lead to death

Note: Yellow fever is caused by a single-stranded RNA virus of the genus Flavivirus (species Yellow fever virus) transmitted from monkey to human or human to human especially by the yellow-fever mosquito.

Few Americans realize that yellow fever was not always a disease of the faraway tropics. In 1878, an outbreak of yellow fever—the virus carried to the United States in mosquitoes from Africa—killed 20,000 people in the Mississippi Valley.— Mary Roach, The New York Times Book Review, 5 Nov. 2006 Although mass vaccination campaigns in Africa between the 1940s and 1960s led to the near disappearance of yellow fever, inadequately immunized populations and urbanization set the stage for the disease to reemerge. By the 1990s, there were an estimated 200 000 annual cases, with 30 000 deaths.— Clem Spalding, The Journal of the American Medical Association, 20 June 2007

called also yellow jack

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Spanish Central: Translation of yellow fever

Nglish: Translation of yellow fever for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about yellow fever

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