The key difference between dengue and chikungunya is that dengue is a viral disease caused by Flavirideae flavivirus, while chikungunya is a viral disease caused by Togaviridae alphavirus.
Dengue and chikungunya diseases are more common in the tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. Historically, chikungunya was referred to as dengue. However, it was only after an outbreak of chikungunya in Makonde Plateau, somewhere near Tanzania, that it was identified as a separate disease. Both of these viral diseases are characterized by similar signs. Despite being similar signs, these viral diseases are very much different. Moreover, both these viral diseases are carried out by the same mosquito type.
What is Dengue?
Dengue is a mosquito-borne illness found in the tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. The mild dengue disease form causes a high fever and flu-like symptoms. The severe form of dengue disease causes dengue hemorrhagic fever. This can cause serious bleeding, a sudden drop in blood pressure (shock), and death. Dengue is spread by several species of female mosquitoes of the genus Aedes (Aedes aeggypti). The causative virus is known as Flavirideae flavivirus. The virus has five serotypes. Moreover, the dengue fever virus is an RNA virus of the family Flaviviridae and genus Flavivirus.
The symptoms of dengue include headache, muscle, bone and joint pain, nausea, vomiting, pain behind the eyes, swollen glands, rash, severe stomach pain, persistent vomiting, bleeding from gums or nose, blood in urine, stool or vomit, bleeding under the skin, difficult or rapid breathing, fatigue, irritability, and restlessness. The diagnosis of dengue disease can be made through physical examination, medical and travel history, and blood tests. The treatment for dengue includes drinking plenty of fluid, over-the-counter medications like acetaminophen to reduce muscle pain and fever, supportive care, intravenous fluid electrolyte replacement, blood pressure monitoring, and transfusion of blood to replace blood loss.
What is Chikungunya?
Chikungunya is a viral disease that is caused by a virus known as Togaviridae alphavirus. The virus is spread between people through two types of mosquitoes: Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti. The symptoms of chikungunya include fever, joint pains, headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, and rash. The risk of death by chikungunya is around 1 in 1000. The very young, old, and those with underlying health problems are at higher risk of more severe disease.
Moreover, the diagnosis of chikungunya is through physical examination, either testing the blood for the RNA of the virus or antibodies to the virus. Treatments for chikungunya include vaccination, supportive care, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (naproxen), acetaminophen and fluids for joint swelling and fever, passive immune therapy (anti-CHIKV hyperimmune human intravenous antibodies), other drugs such as ribavirin for chronic arthritis conditions.
What are the Similarities Between Dengue and Chikungunya?
- Dengue and chikungunya are two viral diseases that are spread by the same mosquito: Aedes aeggypti.
- They are more common in tropical and sub-tropical regions.
- Both of these viral diseases are characterized by similar signs.
- They can be treated through vaccination, specific medicines, and supportive care.
What is the Difference Between Dengue and Chikungunya?
Dengue is a viral disease caused by a virus known as Flavirideae flavivirus, while chikungunya is a viral disease caused by a virus known as Togaviridae alphavirus. This is the key difference between dengue and chikungunya. Furthermore, dengue rashes are limited to limbs, while chikungunya rashes are all across the face, palms, feet, and limbs.
The following table summarizes the difference between dengue and chikungunya.
Summary – Dengue vs Chikungunya
Dengue and chikungunya diseases are two viral diseases that are spread by the same mosquito: Aedes aeggypti. Dengue is caused by Flavirideae flavivirus, while chikungunya is caused by Togaviridae alphavirus. This summarizes the difference between dengue and chikungunya.
1. “Dengue Fever.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research.
2. “Chikungunya: Transmission, Treatment, and Prevention.” WebMD.
1. “Dengue fever symptoms” By Mikael Häggström – (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “2012-01-09 Chikungunya on the left feet at The Philippines” By Nsaa – Own work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia