The name “Chikungunya” has been derived from the word kungunyala of Kimakonde language which means “to become contorted”, and describes the bent look of sufferers with joint pain (arthralgia). Chikungunya is a vector-borne viral disease which has been witnessed during an outbreak in 1952 in southern provinces of Tanzania. It is an RNA virus that belongs to the alphavirus genus of the family Togaviridae. Chikungunya can be transmitted to humans by infected mosquitoes. As a disease, chikungunya resembles very close to dengue fever, which can be characterized by severe and mostly persistent joint pains (arthritis). This is also accompanied by fever and rash. However, chikungunya is not often life-threatening. The places where chikungunya occurs are in Africa, India, and Southeast Asia. Unlike other neglected diseases, it is primarily found in urban and peri-urban areas.
In India, a major epidemic of Chikungunya fever has been recorded during 1963 (Kolkata) closely followed by 1965 and 1973. Then few sporadic cases continued to be recorded in states like Maharashtra during 1983 and 2000. However, the year 2006 has seen it climb to its peak with 1390322 (1.39 million) suspected Chikungunya fever cases reported throughout the country. This year, till July 2017, 16976 clinically suspected chikungunya cases have already been recorded in India, with a recent highest of 64057 in 2016.
Currently, Chikungunya can be pointed as an example of emerging or re-emerging infectious diseases in developing countries. Chikungunya fever as suspected by public health specialists is mostly either misdiagnosed or go unreported.
Chikungunya is found to be caused by the chikungunya virus, which is classified in the genus Alphavirus and the family is Togaviridae. Aedes aegypti is the primary Aedes mosquito which is responsible for Chikungunya…Know More
Often symptoms of chikungunya in infected individuals are mild and the infection may go unrecognized, or be misdiagnosed in areas where dengue occurs… Know More
Prevention is the primary way to protect oneself from chikungunya. No vaccine for chikungunya virus is available, nor drugs are available to cure the infection… Know More