Living With Chikungunya

Mosquito Bite

Mosquito Bite

Chikungunya is a virus native to Africa. There have been several outbreaks of the disease in other parts of the world including Micronesia in the Pacific and Saint Martin in the Caribbean. CDC has issued travel alerts. There was an outbreak in Italy which suggests that more temperate regions such as the United States are vulnerable.

The virus is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes including the common Aedes aegypti and the invasive Asian Tiger Mosquito Aedes albopictus. Both vectors are present in the United States. There is no vaccine or specific treatment for the disease which cause fever over 102 degrees, severe joint and muscle pain and headache. Aspirin is given to lower fever and ease joint pain. Symptoms appear after 3-7 days and last a few days to a week. In some patients, especially the elderly and infants may develop complications. The disease can be debilitating but is rarely fatal.

The best control of the disease in outbreak areas is to control the vector on a large scale through the action of mosquito control districts. Individuals traveling to outbreak areas should wear mosquito repellents and protective clothing. More information about Chikungunya is available from the CDC.

The disease is spread by infected travelers. Preventing its spread requires vector control in outbreak areas to minimize the number of infected travelers and keeping infective individuals from contact with mosquito vectors. With increase in global travel comes increased potential for spread of disease. Preventing the spread depends on cooperation of individuals on a large scales

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is a retired Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
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1 Response to Living With Chikungunya

  1. Pingback: mosquito Indiana | Living With Insects Blog

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