Mon | Feb 27, 2017

CHIK-V AND ME

Published:Tuesday | December 16, 2014 | 12:00 AM

Why do my ankles, fingers and wrists always hurt? I had chik-V months ago. What can I do to get rid of the pain?

Chikungunya may cause persistent painful joints, may worsen pain in previously damaged joint or bones, may cause inflammation and pain of the fibrous tissue that connects muscle to bone (tendon) or the sheath that covers this fibrous tissue, which is called the synovium sheath. Chik-V may also cause inflammation of bursa, which are sacs filled with lubricating liquid found between muscles, tendon and bones. The net effect of all the scenarios described above is pain and swelling of the affected joints.

There are several things that you can do. In general, resting the affected joint reduces pain. However, physical exercise of the affected joint under supervision of a physiotherapist with the aim to improve range of movement, muscle strength and, at the same time, respecting each person's pain threshold is the preferred option. These activities will be supported by judicious use of drugs such as anti-inflammatory drugs, e.g., diclofenac, anti-malarial, e.g., hydroxychloroquine, immunosuppressive drugs, e.g., steroids, methotrexate and biologic agents, e.g., adalimumab. Some other interventions and possible therapies include diet-rich in antioxidants and antiviral drugs. Please discuss solutions with your doctor.