Chikungunya

Chikungunya is an infectious disease and it is said to be the disease of tropical countries. Chikungunya Virus (CHIKV) is transmitted to a human, from the bite of a female mosquito(Aedes mosquito). The first outbreak happened in Tanzania in 1952. At the end of 2004, diseases started to spread in Asian countries for the first time.

Chikungunya is a not a contagious disease but in some case, it can spread through contact with the blood of an infected individual.

Breeding areas:

Ae. aegypti uses indoor breeding sites like flower vases, water storage vessels, concrete water tanks in bathrooms. People who are nearer to those breeding sites of mosquitoes share a significant risk factor of getting chikungunya

Symptoms:

The name Chikungunya is derived from the word “Walk Bent”.  The onset of illness will be from the day 2-4 but can be seen up to three weeks. Fever (up to 104 degrees F)  and joint pains are most commonly seen. Polyarthralgia is the characteristic feature seen in Chikungunya where the arthritis is mostly associated with limb joint. Pains will be severe and disabling

The other symptoms associated are a headache, myalgia, maculopapular rash, conjunctivitis, vomitings.

Investigations:

Chikungunya can be easily misdiagnosed with Dengue and Zika infections as it shares similar symptoms. Taking blood test helps in diagnosing Chikungunya, as it is difficult to differentiate the symptoms. Serological test like ELISA – confirms the presence of IgG and IgM antibodies in the blood.

Treatment:

Most patients recover from fever in a week but the joint pains persist for more than a month. There are no specific medications to treat the virus, except for treating the symptoms alone. Using Antipyretics and analgesics along with intake of plenty of fluids will help in relieving the condition.

There is no Vaccination till date for Chikungunya

Prevention and Control:

        a)Insecticides can be used to spray at the breeding sites

        b)Usage of mosquito repellants can help in  avoiding the spread of infection

        c)Insecticide-treated mosquito nets, mosquito coils, and insecticide vaporizers can help.

-Dr.Bhavani Sagar surampally

 

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