Both local people as well as Western travelers to the Indian Ocean Islands have been affected by the so called chikungunya virus that killed 77 people in the first two months of the year.

The virus is rare but is also potentially life-threatening and is transmitted by mosquitoes. The virus causes fever, joint and muscle pain, headaches and rashes. It is not life-threatening for everyone though. In most people it just causes chronic joint pain three years after contracting the disease. The first symptoms appear a few days after being bitten.

The virus has been located and all travelers who visit the area advised to take preventives against mosquito bites. Those who are the most vulnerable like the elderly, pregnant women and families with children were advised not to travel to these places.

The virus was first found in a woman who traveled from Switzerland to Mauritius for a holiday. She was bitten by the mosquito a few times. She was given treatment to reduce the fever but she experienced persistent arthritis what the virus is famous for.

Although the outbreak has decreased since February, the number of Mauritius’s visitors has decreased too.