The Montgomery County Public Health District is confirming their first case of the Chikungunya virus.
“The individual is a male teenager of Montgomery County who has recently traveled outside of the United States,” said Jennifer Nichols-Contella, Public Information Officer for the Montgomery County Public Health District.
According to the CDC, Chikungunya is a viral disease that is transmitted to people by the Aedes species of mosquitoes that bite mostly during the daytime. It was found for the first time in the Americas on islands in the Caribbean but is now being seen in other countries due to being imported by infected travelers.
Symptoms usually begin three to seven days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. The most common symptoms are fever and severe joint pain but headaches, muscle pain, joint swelling, and rashes are also being reported.
There are no antiviral medicines available to treat the Chikungunya however there are medicines to reduce the fever and pain. Most patients feel better within a week, but some people may develop longer-term joint pain.
People at increased risk include newborns exposed during delivery, adults over the age of 65 and people with medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease.
Deaths are rare. You can protect yourself by using insect repellent, wearing long sleeves and pants and staying in places with air conditioning or that use window and door screens.
Texas currently has five confirmed Chikungunya cases, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.