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Barmah Forest virus

2-minute read

Barmah Forest virus is an illness transmitted by mosquitoes. It is only found in Australia. An infection by the virus is not fatal and people who contract this illness recover.

Barmah Forest virus symptoms and treatment

Symptoms of Barmah Forest virus include fever, headache, tiredness, joint pain, swollen joints, muscle tenderness and skin rashes. Some people (particularly infected children) may show no symptoms.

You will need a blood test to confirm you have Barmah Forest virus. Treatment involves managing the symptoms. Medicine is not always necessary.

Most people get better in a few weeks, but some people may have symptoms like joint pain, tiredness and muscle tenderness for 6 months or more.

Prevention against Barmah Forest virus

To protect yourself from Barmah Forest virus, you need to protect yourself from mosquito bites.

To lessen your chance of being bitten by mosquitoes (as well as midges), cover up as much skin as possible and stay inside in the early morning or at dusk. Screen living areas, and make sure you use an insect repellent when you are outside and there are mosquitoes around.

Information on staying safe around mosquitoes can be found on the Queensland Health website.

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Last reviewed: December 2018


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