What is Chikungunya Virus (CHIKV)?
Chikungunya (pronounced \chik-en-gun-ye) is a virus spread by mosquitoes that bite during the daytime and can breed in containers holding standing water on your property. Outbreaks have occurred in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Indian and Pacific Ocean regions. In late 2013, CHIKV was found in the Americas. Travelers that visit places where CHIKV is currently more prevalent (Caribbean, Central and South America, Mexico, etc.) may be exposed and become ill.
Mosquitoes can bite infected people and then transmit the disease to other people. Approximately 28 cases per year have been reported in the United States, however, there is a risk the virus will be imported to new areas by infected travelers.
What Are the Symptoms of CHIKV?
- Most people who are infected will have symptoms.
- Symptoms include high fever (>102oF), severe joint pain in arms, back, and legs, headache, and rash. Most people feel better within a week. Some people have long-term joint pain.
- Symptoms appear on average three to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito.
- Infants, 65 and Older, and Chronic Health Conditions
- People 65 and older, individuals with diabetes, high blood pressure, or heart disease, and infant and small children less than a year old are more likely to have severe symptoms.