Chikungunya virus infects 121 in Surin

Chikungunya virus infects 121 in Surin

Chikungunya disease is transmitted from human to human by the bites of infected female Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. (Bangkok Post file photo)
Chikungunya disease is transmitted from human to human by the bites of infected female Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. (Bangkok Post file photo)

SURIN: An outbreak of Chikungunya disease, a virus spread by mosquitoes, has struck three villages in this northeastern province, with 121 people falling ill.

Theeraphol Sakulrat, chief of Sikhoraphum district, said affected residents of the villages in tambon Jaraphat had sought treatment at clinics in the province. Many suffered from high fever and pain in their ankles.  

Health officials found 121 residents were infected, he said after visiting patients in the tambon where the outbreak was reported.

Hoei Maithong, 75, said she suffered from a high fever, skin rashes and joint pain and sought treatment at a local hospital. Many neigbhours also had the same symptoms, she added.

Plang Tor-ngam, 47, a resident of tambon Jaraphat, said her family members had recently recovered from the disease. 

She said the outbreak struck her community after some infected residents who worked in Bangkok recently returned home. After that the disease spread and other residents were infected.

Somsak Boontor, chief of the Sikhoraphum district public health office, confirmed that the outbreak was linked to infected people coming from Bangkok and spread quickly. However, he did not give further details.

Local health officials and volunteers have been spraying insecticides, burning garbage and clearing areas with stagnant water to reduce the control mosquito breeding, he added.

According to the World Health Organization, Chikungunya is characterised by an abrupt onset of fever, frequently accompanied by joint pain. The joint pain can be debilitating, but most cases last for only a few days. Most patients recover fully, but in some cases joint pain may persist for months, or even years.


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