What is a ChikunGunya?
Transmitted to humans by the bite of infected mosquitoes Chikungunya is a viral disease. The virus called Chikungunya is a member of the Alpha virus genus, of the family Togaviridae. Chikungunya virus was first isolated from the blood of a febrile patient in Tanzania in 1953, and has since been identified repeatedly in west, central and southern Africa and many areas of India and the rest of Asia, and has been listed as the cause of numerous human epidemics in these areas. The Chikungunya virus circulates throughout much of Africa, with transmission thought to occur mainly between mosquitoes and monkeys. Chikungunya virus is also known as (CHIKV).

How do humans become infected with chikungunya virus?

Chikungunya virus is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes become infected when they feed on a person infected with Chikungunya virus. Monkeys, and possibly other wild animals, may also serve as reservoirs of the virus. Infected mosquitoes can then spread the virus to other humans when they bite.

The incubation period is usually one to several days. This means the disease manifests 1 to a dozen days after the bite of the mosquito. The symptoms and signs include the some of the following

  • High Fever (greater then 103 deg F)

  • Headaches

  • Pain in the Joints

  • Swelling of Joints

  • In some cases Rashes may occur

  • Chills

  • Nausea and/or Vomiting

  • In some rare cases Bleeding or hemorrhage may occur

Acute chikungunya fever typically lasts a few days to a couple of weeks, but as with dengue, West Nile fever and other arboviral fevers, some patients have prolonged fatigue lasting several weeks. Additionally, some patients have reported incapacitating joint pain, or arthritis which may last for weeks or months. The prolonged joint pain associated with chikungunya is not typical of dengue. Co-circulation of dengue fever in many areas may mean that chikungunya fever cases are sometimes clinically misdiagnosed as dengue infections, therefore the incidence of chikungunya fever could be much higher than what has been previously reported.

No deaths, neuroinvasive cases, or hemorrhagic cases related to CHIKV infection have been conclusively documented in the scientific literature.


No medications and No vaccine or specific antiviral treatment for chikungunya fever is available. Treatment is depends on the symptoms currently rest, lots of fluids, and ibuprofen, naproxen, acetaminophen, or paracetamol are known to relieve symptoms of fever and aching. Aspirin  should be avoided chikungunya infection (whether clinical or silent) is thought to confer life-long immunity.


The best way to avoid chikungunya infection is to prevent mosquito bites. There is no vaccine or preventive drug. Prevention tips are similar to those for dengue or West Nile virus:

  • Use insect repellent containing DEET on exposed skin. Always follow the directions on the package.

  •  Wear long sleeves and pants .

  • Have secure screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out. Get rid of mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels. Change the water in pet dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly.

  • Additionally, a person with chikungunya viral fever or dengue should limit their exposure to mosquito bites in order to avoid further spreading the infection. The person should stay indoors or under a mosquito net.


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