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Chikungunya disease detected in Florida

Published:Monday | May 19, 2014 | 12:00 AM


The viral mosquito-borne disease, chikungunya, has been confirmed in three Florida counties.

According to the Florida Department of Health, the women who recently travelled to the Caribbean included a 29-year-old from Broward county.

A 30-year-old woman in Miami-Dade County and a 44-year-old woman in Hillsborough County have also been diagnosed with the disease.

Symptoms of chikungunya usually begin three to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito and can include fever and severe joint pains, often in the hands and feet, according to the department. Other symptoms can include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling or rash.

High-risk persons

People at increased risk for severe disease include newborns exposed during delivery, those 65 or older and people with medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease. The mosquito-borne illness was first detected in the Caribbean in December 2013.

To date, the Chikungunya virus has been confirmed in Anguilla, Aruba, Virgin Islands, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Haiti, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, St Barthelemy, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, St Maarten (Dutch) and St Martin (French).