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War Surgery and Medicine

Source of Infection and Transmission

Source of Infection and Transmission

The source of infection was in the local population where the disease appears to be endemic, becoming epidemic from time to time.

The virus was transmitted by Aedes aegypti which bred in towns and villages in man-made breeding places, e.g., cisterns, barrels, neglected spouting, empty tins, and other artificial collections of water. The mosquitoes were active both by night and day. This mosquito was not seen in rural areas where the camps were situated, and every soldier or nursing sister infected had paid a visit to one of the local villages. In some cases the visits had been of very short duration. In view of this troops were forbidden to enter urban areas unless permission was specially given, and this undoubtedly did a great deal to limit the size of the epidemic. Very few of the army personnel stationed in urban areas escaped infection.