DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) has confirmed its first case of imported Chikungunya virus.
The patient was infected with the virus during a recent trip to the Caribbean, and was diagnosed after returning to Dallas County.
“A person who has Chikungunya needs to avoid getting bit by another mosquito, which in turn could cause it to spread throughout the community,” said Dr. Christopher Perkins, Medical Director of DCHHS.
The DCHHS hasn’t released the patient’s identity due to medical confidentiality and personal privacy reasons.
Chikungunya virus is transmitted to people by mosquitoes. The virus causes high fever and severe joint pain, which starts suddenly. It can also cause headache, muscle pain and rash. CHIKV does not often result in death, but the symptoms can be disabling, and some people may get severe complications. There isn’t a specific medication available to treat CHIKV and a vaccine doesn’t exist.
DCHHS has advised the public to use the ‘4Ds’ to help reduce the chance of suffering a bite by a mosquito infected with Chikungunya.
• DEET All Day, Every Day: Whenever you’re outside, use insect repellants that contain DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus.
• DRESS: Wear long, loose and light-colored clothing outside.
• DRAIN: Remove all areas of standing water in and around your home.
• DUSK & DAWN: Limit outdoor activities during dusk and dawn hours when mosquitoes are most active.
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