By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

In a follow-up on the chikungunya outbreak in Dire-Dawa, Ethiopia, health officials report an additional 5,500 cases in the week ending September 15, bringing the outbreak total to 40,340 since late July.

Ethiopia, Africa

Cases have been reported from all kebeles, or neighborhoods in the Dire Dawa city administration, which has a population of 335,000.

This is the second chikungunya outbreak in Ethiopia, the last was in the summer of 2016.

The outbreak comes at a time when Ethiopia is facing numerous other health emergencies that are stretching the limited resources available, including a humanitarian crisis, malnutrition, cholera, dengue fever and measles outbreaks.

Chikungunya is a viral disease transmitted to humans by infected mosquitoes. It causes fever and severe joint pain, which is often debilitating. Other symptoms include muscle pain, headache, nausea, fatigue, and rash.

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The disease shares some clinical signs with dengue and Zika, and can be misdiagnosed in areas where they are common. As there is no cure, treatment is focused on relieving the symptoms.