Local health officials comment on mosquito-borne illness

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - This week, WKYT has been tracking the latest on the Chikungunya, or Chic-V, a mosquito-borne illness that's making its way around the U.S.

The cases are getting closer to Kentucky. There are confirmed cases in states as close as Tennessee and Indiana. Lexington-Fayette County health official, Kevin Hall, has been on the lookout for it in the Bluegrass. There are no confirmed cases here yet.

Hall says if you're bitten by a mosquito carrying the virus, it could make you completely miserable.

"Pretty severe joint pain, particularly in hands and feet, you can have a fever with that also if you have a headache, muscle tightness, call your doctor," Hall says.

Lately, the virus has been wreaking havoc in the Caribbean, and as travelers come back home to the states, so does Chic V.

So far, health officials have confirmed cases in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Indiana to name a few. State health experts say they are conducting lab confirmations of the virus, but the results won't come back until the end of a week a the earliest.

"The likelihood of you catching the virus is very slim, but it's still something to watch for," Hall continues.

He says spraying for mosquitoes around the city is going on from 3 a.m. to 6 a.m. Health department officials say there are some things you can do to protect yourself.

"The main thing is to watch for standing water, bird baths... empty those every five to seven days," Hall advises.

Hall also suggests talking to your doctor if you plan on visiting the Caribbean, especially if you are high risk, or traveling with an infant.

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