Sussex County Man Contracts Mosquito Illness Chikungunya - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Sussex County Man Contracts Mosquito Illness Chikungunya

DOVER, Del. - A 51-year-old Sussex County man was diagnosed with the first case of Chikungunya virus in Delaware.  The Delaware Division of Public Health announced Thursday the man contracted the virus from a mosquito while on a recent trip to the Caribbean.  According to DPH, the man was treated for his symptoms in early July.  He was never admitted to the hospital.

Chikungunya cases have also been diagnosed in Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, including at least two cases in Philadelphia. So far, Florida is the only state that has seen cases that aren't related to travel.

"Given global travel habits, we considered the disease coming to Delaware almost inevitable," said Dr. Karyl Rattay, DPH director. "Because there is no anti-viral medication to treat Chikungunya and we now know the disease can be locally acquired, like in the two Florida cases, it is especially important that people protect themselves from mosquito-borne disease."

Chikungunya virus is rarely fatal. Infected people typically suffer fever, severe joint pain and swelling, muscle aches, headaches or rash. Patients usually recover in about a week, although some people suffer long-term joint pain. There is no vaccine and no specific treatment.

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