Yellow fever is found only in parts of Central and South America and Sub-saharan Africa (see Yellow Fever Risk Areas).
The cause is a virus that is spread through the bite of an infected Aedes aegypti mosquito which predominantly bites during daylight hours. It exists in three transmission cycles; Jungle, Urban and Intermediate yellow fever.
Yellow Fever - The Illness
The incubation period is usually short, 3-6 days. Symptoms of the disease include sudden onset of fever, backache, generalised muscle pain, nausea and vomiting. Jaundice can also be seen early in the disease and this intensifies as the disease progresses. Infection with yellow fever results in lifelong protection in individuals who survive. Up to 60% of those infected with yellow fever will die from the disease.
There is no specific treatment for yellow fever virus.