A 11-year-old resident of Irving who recently traveled to India is the first imported chikungunya virus (CHIKV) case in Dallas County, according to the Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS).
CHIKV is transmitted to people through mosquito bites from Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. These are the same mosquitoes that have been found to carry Zika and Dengue viruses. CHIKV does not often result in death, however the symptoms can be disabling. Most people infected with CHIKV will develop symptoms of fever, joint pain, headache, muscle pain, joint swelling or rash.
There is no vaccine to treat or prevent the chikungunya virus. CDC advises persons with CHIKV to get plenty of rest, drink fluids to prevent dehydration and to take Tylenol to reduce fever and pain.
In related mosquito borne disease news, DCHHS also reported the sixth human West Nile virus case of the year.
The patient is a resident of the 75205 zip code of Highland Park and has been diagnosed with West Nile Neuroinvasive disease. So far, one WNV death has been reported in Dallas County in 2018.
WNV is a disease that is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes can become infected when they feed on the blood from infected birds. The infected mosquitoes can then transmit WNV to humans and animals. Severe WNV infections can cause neurologic complications such as encephalitis. Milder symptoms include fever, headache and muscle aches. There is no vaccine or specific treatment for WNV.
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