The Ecuador Ministry of Health has reported the first travel associated chikungunya case in an individual who recently returned from a trip to Colombia, according to a Pam Am Post report Friday.
The patient, a 41-year-old Ecuadorian woman, was hospitalized with the viral infection in her hometown of Loja, Ecuador, but was released after receiving treatment and is currently under observation at her home.
To date, Colombia has reported more than 6,000 locally acquired chikungunya cases, according to a Pan American Health Organization update Friday. The PAHO says there has been 750,000 autochthonous chikungunya cases reported in the Western hemisphere since December 2013. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page
Chikungunya is a viral disease transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitoes such as Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. It can cause high fever, join and muscle pain, and headache. Chikungunya does not often result in death, but the joint pain may last for months or years and may become a cause of chronic pain and disability. There is no specific treatment for chikungunya infection, nor any vaccine to prevent it. Pending the development of a new vaccine, the only effective means of prevention is to protect individuals against mosquito bites.