Tag Archives: chikungunya

Mosquito threat highest Now

In 2012 Dallas was the national epicenter of a West Nile epidemic.  A mild winter and very hot summer combined to make conditions that resulted in approximately 400 reported cases and 19 deaths in Dallas county alone.  While 2015 has not approached the mosquito numbers or disease transmission potential of 2012, this year’s data suggests that risk for getting a WNV infection from a mosquito is peaking higher than any time since then. Traditionally the potential for WNV transmission peaks in August and this year looks like no… Read More →

Caution in the Caribbean

I had an inquiry today about the safety of travel to Caribbean destinations on cruises.  The person was concerned about Chikungunya and whether a spouse with health problems should risk taking a Caribbean cruise.  The answer is that Chikungunya is a risk if you decide to go ashore on most of the Caribbean islands.  If you are planning a trip to warm Caribbean waters, don’t necessarily cancel your plans; but you should arm yourself with the information to know the risks. The Centers for Disease Control still rate travel to the… Read More →

What is chikungunya and why should we care?

Over 30 years ago as a graduate student taking a course in medical entomology, I learned about all kinds of diseases spread by insects.  By far, most of these were tropical and exotic-sounding.  I figured that, if I lived and worked in the U.S., my chances of encountering most of these pathogens was practically nil. Chikungunya (chik-un-GOON-ya) virus was one of those diseases I memorized way back then, and have since mostly forgotten.  The chikungunya disease was first described in 1952 during an outbreak in southern Tanzania (east Africa).  The name… Read More →