Mysterious disease in Pakistan is thought to be chikungunya

Hundreds of people have been infected with an unknown disease in the Malir area. Over 70 medical staff have also been infected and officials are saying that symptoms include: fever at first, and severe joint pain which disables people for three days,. Experts say that the disease is spreading through mosquito bites.

Visit our Health Library for more information on exposure to and the prevention of Chikungunya Fever.

Advice For Travellers

While laboratory confirmation of the cause of this infection is still pending, it seems likely that the chikungunya virus is responsible based on the patients’ symptoms and the suspicion that it is being spread by mosquitoes. While the risk of exposure for travellers may vary from place to place, it may be high in some localities.

All travellers to areas where chikungunya fever virus is active can reduce their risk of exposure to this virus by taking all necessary precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Many persons with chikungunya fever do not seek medical care and are not reported to health authorities. This may account for the low numbers of reported cases in many countries. There may be many more cases in the community that are not reported. Chikungunya virus infections may have long lasting health consequences.