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Nicaragua confirms first chikungunya virus cases

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MANAGUA, Nicaragua (AP) — The Nicaraguan government has confirmed the country's first two cases of people infected with a mosquito-borne virus that has spread quickly through the Caribbean region this year.

Government spokeswoman Rosario Murrillo said Wednesday a woman and her 4 year-old daughter contracted the chikungunya virus in the Dominican Republic where they spent three months. Murillo says the 24-year-old woman and her daughter are hospitalized and in good health.

Chikungunya has long been present in Africa and Asia and was first detected in the Caribbean in December.

It rarely results in death but the symptoms can be debilitating. Its symptoms have been described as a combination of a terrible flu and a sudden case of arthritis, with searing headaches, a high fever and intense muscle and joint pain.

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