Although mortality rates related with chikungunya (CHIK) outbreaks in Latin America's (LA's) dengue-endemic rural and new urban regions are low, dealing with symptoms and sequelae can both produce a significant burden of disease and diminish quality of life—from many months to years—after the acute phase of the infection, with a significant impact on public and individual health.
The aim of this work was to establish Pan-American League of Associations for Rheumatology–Central American, Caribbean and Andean Rheumatology Association (ACCAR) consensus-conference endorsements and recommendations on the diagnosis and treatment of CHIK-related inflammatory arthropathies transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus in LA.
Based on the Consensus Development Conference format, a panel of ACCAR rheumatologist voting members (n = 10) took part in this Pan-American League of Associations for Rheumatology initiative. Experts voted from a previous content analysis of the medical literature on CHIK, 4 subsequent topic conferences, and a workshop. Consensus represents the majority agreement (≥80%) achieved for each recommendation.
The experts' panel reached 4 overarching principles: (1) CHIK virus (CHIKV) is a re-emergent virus transmitted by 2 species of mosquitoes: A. aegypti and A. albopictus; (2) CHIKV caused massive outbreaks in LA; (3) chronic CHIKV infection produces an inflammatory joint disease that, in some cases, can last for several months to years, and (4) currently, there are no vaccines or antivirals licensed for CHIKV infections.
Pan-American League of Associations for Rheumatology–ACCAR achieved 13 endorsements and recommendations on CHIK categorized in 3 groups: (1) epidemiology and clinical manifestations, (2) diagnosis, and (3) treatment, representing the consensus agreement from the panel's members.