FORT MYERS, FL.--Health officials are on high alert ahead of Memorial Day because they are worried about a dangerous disease surfacing in Florida for the very first time.
It's called Chikungunya and it's spread by *mosquitoes.
To date, four cases have popped up in our state.
Three on the east coast and another about 90 minutes away from southwest Florida in Hillsborough county.
"And they are all imported cases which means people were infected outside the U.S.," said Diane Holm with the Florida Health Department in Lee County.
"This particular mosquito is a daytime biter," said Shelly Redovan with the Lee County Mosquito Control District.
Redovan also says two kinds of mosquitoes that carry Chikungunya have been found in a couple of areas around Fort Myers.
"We are monitoring that particular mosquito and watching that it doesn't get to be in too many numbers," said Redovan.
Experts also say these particular mosquitoes don't live and breed around large bodies of standing water.
"These mosquitoes are container breeders. They like to breed right around a house, in the trash," said Redovan.
WINK News is learning that the latest victims in Florida recently visited the Caribbean, where there have been more than 55,000 reported cases.
"They start with a fever and usually severe joint pain," said Holm.
Other symptoms include a headache, muscle pain, joint swelling and a rash.
There is also no vaccine or medication for Chikungunya and it typically takes 3-7 days before you'll notice any symptoms.
"Once a person gets bit, they have a 60% chance of being symptomatic," said Redovan.