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Chikungunya is an infection caused by an antivirus which was first isolated from a fever patient in Tanzania in 1953. It has been detected regularly in Asia and Africa, but the first outbreak in India was detected in 1965. The last outbreak was detected in 1973 in Barshi, Solapur, Maharashtra. The outbreak lasts for a few years and then disappears as people develop immunity.

Chikungunya is spread by the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus mosquito. The time from the infection to the illness (incubation period) can be two to 10 days. The infection can be transmitted from other human beings, monkeys and other animals. The mosquitoes breed in stagnant water in household containers. They bite during the day, a few hours after dawn and late afternoon. They have adapted to living near humans by reducing the humming of the wings.

The symptoms of Chikungunya are fever which reaches 102o F , painful joints, rashes, severe headache and vomiting, fatigue, slight photophobia and nausea. Most patients recover within a week, but the arthritic pains last for weeks or months. Natural remedies for joint pains. Chikungunya is not fatal, but weakens the immune system, resulting in patients succumbing to secondary diseases. However, the virus may be mutating (changing) into a more deadly strain in India. Ginger chutney, coriander chutney and ragi gruel are said to improve immunity to the disease.

Paracetamol is used for treatment of Chikungunya. Rest and drinking plenty of fluids will help in recovery. Aspirin should be avoided. No vaccine is available. Homoeopaths say that Eupatorium perfoliatum 200, taken twice daily for 3 days and then 2 doses a week at 3-4 day intervals, acts as a preventive. Other homeopathic medicines are Gelsemium, Rhus Tox, Bryonia Alba, Cedron, Influenzinum, Arnica and Belladona. Chloroquine may also be used in the future for treatment. 

Pest control methods for mosquitoes should be used. Additionally, an infected person should not be exposed to mosquitoes, to prevent spread of the disease.
Preventing mosquito bites


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