UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: International EM

Title: What's an Arbovirus?

Keywords: Arbovirus, mosquitos (PubMed Search)

Posted: 8/3/2016 by Jon Mark Hirshon, MD, MPH, PhD (Updated: 4/13/2024)
Click here to contact Jon Mark Hirshon, MD, MPH, PhD

An Arbovirus is a virus transmitted primarily by an arthropod

  • Comes from ARthropod-BOrne virus
  • Arthropods include: mosquitos, ticks, sandflies
  • Can have rare person-to-person transmission
    • Blood borne
      • Transfusion, sharing needles
    • Organ transplantation
    • Breast feeding
    • Intrauterine
    • Sexual transmission

There are a number of major arbovirus families:

The main viral family that causes substantial human disease is the Flaviviridae family.

  • Protection against mosquito bites is the best way to minimize risk for Flaviviridae infections if you are traveling in an area with these diseases.