What is Chikungunya Fever?
Chikungunya Fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease caused by the chikungunya virus. The disease is characterised by fever and joint pain. Other common signs and symptoms include headache, fatigue and rash. Most patients recover fully, but in some cases joint pain may persist for several months, or even years. The incubation period ranges from 2 to 12 days.
How does it spread?
Chikungunya virus is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes to human.
How can you prevent it?
There is no effective vaccine against Chikungunya Fever. Travellers should adopt the following measures to avoid mosquito bites:
- Wear loose, light-coloured, long-sleeved tops and trousers;
- Rest in air-conditioned or well-screened rooms;
- Use aerosol insecticide indoor and use bed nets if sleeping areas are not air-conditioned or screened ;
- Use insect repellents containing DEET on exposed skin and clothing. For details about the use of insect repellents, please refer to Frequently Asked Questions.
How is it treated?
Travellers returning from countries where the disease is endemic or an outbreak has occurred, and suffer from symptoms of the disease should seek prompt medical advice. Currently, there is no specific antiviral drug for chikungunya fever and treatment is mainly symptomatic.