Polk County Confirms First Case Of Chikungunya Fever

HEALTH NEWS: Chikungunya Fever

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. (AP) — Polk County health officials confirmed the first case of the mosquito-borne disease chikungunya fever in the county.

The Tampa Tribune (http://bittyurl.co/4nhx) reported Tuesday that the infected victim had recently traveled to the Caribbean.

Cases in Miami-Dade, Broward and Hillsborough counties were previously confirmed in others who had traveled to the Caribbean. Polk County officials say this is the 48th reported case of chikungunya in Florida.

The disease is transmitted to humans by infected mosquitoes. It has been documented in 40 countries in Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. Symptoms typically begin three to seven days after being bitten and include fever and severe joint pains, often in the hands and feet.

There is no vaccine or medication to prevent the disease, but it rarely kills those infected.