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What is Kyasanur Forest Disease: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Transmission, Incubation Period, Risk Factors, Prevention

What is Kyasanur Forest Disease?

Kyasanur Forest disease is a viral hemorrhagic fever caused by the bite of a tick, which transmits the Kyasanur Forest Disease and this virus belongs to Flaviviridae family. The virus of Kyasanur Forest disease was discovered in a sick monkey in the Kyasanur Forest in Karnataka, India.

What is Kyasanur Forest Disease?

Cause & Transmission of Kyasanur Forest Disease

The transmission of Kyasanur Forest Disease is by the bite of hard ticks. Common hosts of Kyasanur Forest Disease are shrews, rodents and monkeys. Kyasanur Forest Disease gets transmitted to the human beings after they get bitten by an infected tick or if they come in contact with an animal who is infected with Kyasanur Forest Disease virus, particularly a sick or a monkey which has been dead recently. Other animals like cows, goats and sheep can also get infected with Kyasanur Forest Disease; however, they have been rarely known to transmit this disease to humans. There is also no known evidence of transmission of Kyasanur Forest Disease through unpasteurized milk from any infected animals.

Can Kyasanur Forest Disease Get Transmitted From One Person To Another?

As of now, there has been no person-to-person transmission of Kyasanur Forest Disease known.

Incubation Period & Symptoms of Kyasanur Forest Disease

The incubation period of Kyasanur Forest Disease is around 3 to 8 days. The symptoms of Kyasanur Forest Disease start abruptly with fever, chills and headache. Patient then experiences severe pain in the muscles with vomiting. Gastrointestinal symptoms and problems with bleeding also can develop after 3 to 4 days of the onset of the symptoms. Hemorrhagic symptoms of Kyasanur Forest Disease consist of bleeding from the throat, nasal cavity and gums. Patient can also have gastrointestinal bleeding. Patients suffering from Kyasanur Forest Disease also can have extremely low blood pressure, low red blood cell, platelets and white blood cell counts.

Second Phase of Symptoms of Kyasanur Forest Disease

After 1 to 2 weeks of development of the symptoms, there are some patients who recover without experiencing any complications from Kyasanur Forest Disease. However, Kyasanur Forest Disease is biphasic for a group of patients who suffer from a second rush of symptoms when the third week starts. These symptoms consist of fever and neurological signs such as severe headache, tremors, mental disturbances and vision problems.

Recovery from Kyasanur Forest Disease

Complete recovery from Kyasanur Forest Disease usually takes a long time and can take up to several months. Patient suffers from weakness and muscle aches during the recovery period and finds it difficult to perform any physical activities.

Who is at Risk for Developing Kyasanur Forest Disease?

Individuals with occupational or recreational exposure to outdoor settings within the state of Karnataka, India are at increased risk for Kyasanur Forest Disease through the bite of infected ticks. Dry season/weather is another thing, which increases the risk of contracting Kyasanur Forest Disease.

How is Kyasanur Forest Disease Diagnosed?

Diagnosis of Kyasanur Forest Disease can be made through molecular detection by PCR technique or isolation of virus can be done from the patient’s blood sample.

How is Kyasanur Forest Disease Treated?

Kyasanur Forest Disease does not have any specific treatment. However, supportive treatment for Kyasanur Forest Disease consists of hospitalization, intravenous fluids, and the standard precautions which are taken in patients having bleeding disorders.

How Can Kyasanur Forest Disease Be Prevented?

People at risk for Kyasanur Forest Disease can be vaccinated against it. Other preventive measures consist of wearing pr00otective clothing and using insect repellents in areas where ticks are endemic.


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – Kyasanur Forest Disease: https://www.cdc.gov/vhf/kyasanur/index.html
  2. Indian Journal of Medical Research – Kyasanur Forest Disease: An Epidemiological View in India: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3151468/
  3. Journal of Vector Borne Diseases – Kyasanur Forest Disease: An Emerging Health Problem in India: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2899421/
  4. National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) – Kyasanur Forest Disease: A Brief Review: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3571522/

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 2, 2023

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