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- What is Chikungunya virus?
- Where is Chikungunya virus most prevalent?
- How is Chikungunya virus transmitted?
- Is Chikungunya virus infection contagious?
- What are Chikungunya virus infection symptoms?
- How is Chikungunya virus infection diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for Chikungunya virus infection?
- How can Chikungunya virus infection be prevented?
What is Chikungunya virus?
The infection caused by Chikungunya virus is was first described in East Africa in 1952. The virus is transmitted by mosquitoes and belongs to the family Togaviridae in the genus Alphavirus.
Where is Chikungunya virus most prevalent?
Although Chikungunya virus has been mainly reported in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the islands in the Indian and Pacific oceans, it has spread to the Americas recently. However, you no longer have to travel to a faraway place such as French Polynesia like Lindsay Lohan did in December 2014 to become infected. In 2013 the virus had spread to the Caribbean islands. As of December, 2014, 41 countries or territories in the Caribbean, Central America, South America and North America have had laboratory – confirmed Chikungunya infections.
How is Chikungunya virus transmitted?
- Humans are infected when Aedes aegypti and albopictus mosquitoes, containing Chikungunya virus, bite humans.
- The viruses are transmitted during the mosquito bite (blood meal).
- The viruses then multiply in humans and can then be picked up by other uninfected mosquitoes when they bite infected humans to complete the viral replication cycle.
Is Chikungunya virus infection contagious?
Chikungunya virus infection is not considered to be contagious because there is no direct human to human transfer of Chikungunya viruses, so infected individuals cannot directly transfer the virus to another human because the virus has to pass through a mosquito first. However, outbreaks can occur in populations where a number of both mosquitoes and humans are infected with the virus. Rarely, the virus may be transmitted from the mother to her newborn; also, researchers suggest the virus may possibly be transferred by blood transfusions from an infected individual.