Thursday, May 7, 2015


Chikungunya! Say it aloud:  CHICK-uhn-GUN-yuh.  What is it? 
Quick quiz:
a) It's the latest trendy dance craze.

b) It's a tasty creole dinner recipe

c) It's a nasty mosquito-borne illness

d) It's a newly-discovered Amazonian dialect

Pat yourself on the back if you answered "c". Chikungunya is a tropical disease transmitted by the daytime bite of a mosquito. Dubbed "break-bone disease" because of the joint pain it causes, it is similar to malaria. Its symptoms are usually more severe but less long-lasting. Chikungunya appeared for the first time ever in Haiti last year, apparently via mosquitoes carried in inadvertently by visitors. All the MBB staff in Haiti suffered from it for a few days before it mercifully ebbed.

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