Chikungunya is a mosquito-borne viral disease that was first described in an outbreak in southern Tanzania in 1952. It is a ribonucleic acid (RNA) virus and is a genus oftogaviridae virus. "Chikungunya" is taken from a word in Kimakonde meaning "to be awkward" and describes how the patient bends over because of joint pain.
Chikungunya has been identified in nearly 60 countries in Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas. Female mosquitoes infected with the virus bite and cause human-to-human viral infections. In most cases, such mosquitoes are Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, which also transmit other viruses, including the dengue virus. Although bite peaks occur in the early morning and early evening, these mosquitoes also bite people during the day. Both mosquitoes bite outdoors, and Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are also good at indoor bites.