Over the last couple of years, Filipinos have experienced an increase in viral outbreaks such as dengue and just recently, Chikungunya. Like Dengue, Chikungunya is also spread by the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes but a study by Pasteur Institute said that the virus has undergone mutation and is now also carried by the Asian tiger mosquito or Aedes albopictus. Chikungunya was first noted in India and its neighboring countries but soon it has reached Southeast Asian countries including the Philippines.
People who were affected with Chikungunya runs a fever that last for a few days to a few weeks. Their body temperature can go as high as 102 degrees F. Skin eruptions and rashes are a common symptom and they are mostly concentrated on the lower limbs and trunk. Many complain about extreme pain on their joints (lower back, ankle, knees or wrists) which have a debilitating effect on the body and posture. One may also experience intense headache, weakness, fatigue and loss of sleep for a week or more. A person who experiences these symptoms should be taken into a medical clinic for proper diagnosis as this mosquito bite virus can be detected using serological tests.
There is no vaccine or known cure for Chikungunya. The best way to avoid it is to prevent mosquito bites. Fumigation, anti-mosquito sprays, lotion, repellants and patches can be helpful but keeping your surroundings clean will prevent any mosquito breeding grounds to develop.
Photo credits: en.wikipedia.org