Crimean–Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is a widespread tick-borne viral disease. The virus is a member of the Bunyaviridae family of RNA viruses. It is a zoonotic disease carried by several domestic and wild animals. While clinical disease is rare in infected animals, it is severe in infected humans, with a mortality rate of 10-40%. Outbreaks of illness are usually attributable to Hyalomma tick bites or contact with infected animals or people. The virus is primarily transmitted to people from ticks and livestock animals. Human-to-human transmission can occur resulting from close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected persons. The symptoms include mood instability, agitation, mental confusion and throat petechiae, then soon nosebleeds, rainbow urine and vomiting, and black stools. The liver becomes swollen and painful. Disseminated intravascular coagulation may occur as well as acute kidney failure and shock, and sometimes acute respiratory distress syndrome. Patients usually begin to show signs of recovery after 9–10 days from when the symptoms appear, however 30% of the cases result in death on the second week of the illness.
Based on the serosurvey data, the presence of CCHF was suspected long back in Jammu and Kashmir in India; similarly CCHF reactive antibodies were detected in southern India. The presence of this virus (CCHFV) was confirmed for the first time during investigation of a nosocomial outbreak in Ahmadabad, Gujarat State, India in 2011. This CCHF outbreak resulted in four deaths in 2011.
General supportive care with treatment of symptoms is the main approach to managing CCHF in people. The antiviral drug ribavirin has been used to treat CCHF infection with apparent benefit. Both oral and intravenous formulations seem to be effective.
The ongoing researches in India on Crimean–Congo hemorrhagic fever include: Serosurvey of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus in domestic animals, Gujarat, India, 2013, Emergence of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever in Amreli District of Gujarat State, India, June to July 2013.