Mississippi has 2 more cases of mosquito-borne virus

The blood-sucking mosquito is a nuisance, as well as a threat with the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses like West Nile virus and cephalitis. June, July and August are prime months for mosquito activity. (PRNewsphoto/Orkin LLC)

The blood-sucking mosquito is a nuisance, as well as a threat with the spread of mosquito-borne illnesses like West Nile virus and cephalitis. June, July and August are prime months for mosquito activity. (PRNewsphoto/Orkin LLC)

Associated Press

JACKSON –The Mississippi State Department of Health has confirmed two more cases of chikungunya (chih-kihn-GUHN’-yuh) virus, a mosquito-borne illness traditionally found in Africa and Asia.

State health officials say in a news release the cases occurred in residents who recently returned from the Dominican Republic and Haiti. In June, a case was reported in a Mississippi resident who had traveled to Haiti.

Symptoms include fever, muscle and joint pain and joint swelling. Deaths are rare, but officials say anyone with a compromised immune system is at a higher risk of complications from the infection.

Officials say the virus recently appeared in the Caribbean, and could possibly infect Mississippians who travel there.

Health officials say individuals who think they might be infected with chikungunya virus should see their health care provider.