Chikungunya in US: Arizona among 129 reported cases of mosquito-transported virus, says CDC

PHOENIX - A mosquito-transmitted virus has made its way to Arizona, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Chikungunya virus, often located in Africa, Southern Europe and Southeast Asia, is a virus transmitted by mosquitos and typically causes fever and severe joint pain most commonly in hands and feet, according to the CDC website .

The virus was first reported in the Caribbean Islands in late 2013, but had not made its way to the states. However, the CDC reported that as of July 1, 2014, Arizona is among 26 other states that have had at least one reported case of the virus.

In total, 129 cases of the virus have been reported to ArboNET, the national surveillance system for arthropod-born disease, as of July 1, according to the CDC. Most of the cases were from travelers returning to the United States from the Caribbean, Pacific Islands or Asia.

CHART: View which states have had reported cases of the Chikungunya virus

Currently, there are no antiviral medicines to treat the virus, however, there are medications that can be used to treat the symptoms, such as fever, headache, muscle pain, joint swelling or rash.

The CDC said deaths due to the illness are rare. The organization said those infected typically feel better within a week.

PREVENTION TIPS

- Reduce mosquito exposure (use air conditioning, window/door screens, bug repellant, wear long-sleeved shirts)

- Don't travel to areas with ongoing Chikungunya outbreaks


View more information on the disease at cdc.gov .

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