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Combating The Chikungunya Virus In Florida

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Concern is growing in Florida about a disease with a funny sounding name but very serious effects.

There have been at least 50 reported cases of chikungunya in Florida this year, and it seems to be spreading throughout the state. It’s believed all of the cases were contracted outside the United States.

The virus most commonly causes a high fever, joint pain and swelling, back pain and a rash, but as many as 28 percent of infected people have no symptoms.

It is rarely fatal, but the symptoms are described as miserable and debilitating. As with other viral infections, newborns and elders are at the greatest risk.

Dr. Chau Kelly, University of North Florida assistant professor of history, joined Melissa Ross for more on chikungunya.

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter @MelissainJax.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.