Three people, two in San Juan and one in Fajardo, have died in Puerto Rico from chikungunya; however, neither Puerto Rican health officials nor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) can say 2 other deaths are directly linked to the mosquito borne virus, according to a post on the Dept de Salud de PR Twitter page.
To date, Puerto Rico has seen 2,003 confirmed and 6,277 suspected indigenous chikungunya cases on the island, according to the Pan American Health Organization last week. No deaths were reported as of that date.
In mid-July 2014, Puerto Rico declared chikungunya an epidemic on the island.
Health officials on the island say that “most people on the island will experience chikungunya within the next two years.”
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. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page