It is a viral infection caused by mosquitoes.
Mosquitoes of 2 species are known to cause Chikungunya. They are-
1) Aedes aegypti and
2) Aedes albopictus
It is spread from an individual to another individual by mosquito bites. Mosquito transmit the viruses of Chikungunya in humans when they bite them. Viruses multiply in human body causing fever to rise high. Such an individual who is suffering from Chikungunya is when bit with other mosquitoes who are not carrying Chikungunya virus too becomes carrier thereby completing viral replication cycle. Virus of Chikungunya not only enters human body but also is detected in various animals like cattle, monkeys and even birds.
Do not let mosquito to bite you and this can be done by-
- Keeping your house and surrounding environment clean and do not let water to stand which will prevent mosquito breeding.
- Mosquito repellents like coils, creams, mats, sprays, liquids etc..... should be used properly.
- Cover your body as much as possible to prevent mosquito bite. Wear long sleeves t-shirts, long pants and hats which carefully cover your body.
- Windows and doors should be secured with screens so that mosquitoes do not enter inside home.
- Avoid traveling or visiting those areas where Chikungunya is prevalent. If traveling cannot be avoided then take all the precautions which are necessary.
- Sleeping in mosquito nets is particularly useful precaution that will prevent mosquito bite.
- Chikungunya is not only found in India but is also prevalent in many parts of the world.
- In 1955, its first outbreak was reported in Tanzania, Africa.
- It is seen all over the world and recent outbreaks have been reported from Asia, Europe, Africa along with islands of Indian and Pacific oceans.
- In 2014, this infection reached many parts of America too like North America, South America, Central America, Caribbean Islands.
1) High fever,
2) Joint pain,
3) Muscle pain,
5) Rash development,
6) Digestion related troubles,
9) Exhaustion of extreme degree,
10) Stiffness in joints,
12) Nausea or vomiting,
13) Diarrhea etc.....
Symptoms subside within 3 days to a week. However, most of the sufferers complain of joint pain for months after attack of Chikungunya infection.
- Mortality rate of Chikungunya is less than 1 in 1,000.
- Usually symptoms subside within a week leaving certain signs like joint pains which may last for months.
- However, in neonates, elderly individuals and those suffering from underlying chronic diseases may show some complications.
- During delivery, neonates may suffer from Chikungunya resulting from mother and have high chances of morbidity.
- Overall this infection is rarely fatal or life threatening apart from certain severe cases where immunity is compromised.
1) High fever, joint pain and other such symptoms will lead to clinical suspicion of this infection.
2) Blood antibody tests- It differentiates Chikungunya from dengue fever.
3) Decrease in lymphocyte count.
5) Viral isolation.
6) Serological diagnosis.
8) C reactive protein finding.
9) Increased cytokines.
1) No specific treatment is available for Chikungunya.
2) Supportive care is recommended.
3) Complete bed rest.
4) Medicines like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, non-aspirin analgesics and paracetamol are given to bring the body temperature down and to reduce swelling.
5) Fluid intake or fluid transfusion is done to keep body hydrated.
6) Immunoglobulins are given to those who are at high risk of infection.
7) Drugs like ribavirin, NSAID's, analgesics, methotrexate can provide relief in joint pain.
Homeopathy claims its effectiveness in treating Chikungunya by prescribing following medicines-
5) Belladona etc.....