Epidemiology of Chikungunya in the Americas

J Infect Dis. 2016 Dec 15;214(suppl 5):S441-S445. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiw390.


Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) emerged in the Americas in late 2013 to cause substantial acute and chronic morbidity. About 1.1 million cases of chikungunya were reported within a year, including severe cases and deaths. The burden of chikungunya is unclear owing to inadequate disease surveillance and underdiagnosis. Virus evolution, globalization, and climate change may further CHIKV spread. No approved vaccine or antiviral therapeutics exist. Early detection and appropriate management could reduce the burden of severe atypical and chronic arthritic disease. Improved surveillance and risk assessment are needed to mitigate the impact of chikungunya.

Keywords: Americas; arbovirus; chikungunya; emerging disease; epidemiology.

MeSH terms

  • Aedes / virology
  • Americas / epidemiology
  • Animals
  • Chikungunya Fever / complications
  • Chikungunya Fever / epidemiology*
  • Chikungunya Fever / prevention & control
  • Chikungunya Fever / virology
  • Chikungunya virus / genetics
  • Chikungunya virus / immunology
  • Chikungunya virus / physiology*
  • Climate Change
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / embryology
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / epidemiology*
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / prevention & control
  • Communicable Diseases, Emerging / virology
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Humans
  • Mosquito Vectors / virology
  • Risk Assessment