Published: Sat, August 11, 2018
Medicine | By Tracy Klein

First 2 human cases of West Nile in CT reported

First 2 human cases of West Nile in CT reported

The last human case reported in Cascade County was in 2015, according to a press release from the Cascade City-County Health Department.

Health officials said that doesn't automatically mean there's cause for alarm.

Positive samples for West Nile have been found in Clark County for several years.

"This is the first direct evidence of West Nile activity in our area this summer", reads a release from Hastings Prince Edward Public Health.

The CCHD says that the infected person is over the age of 65 and was exhibiting WNV symptoms, which led to being tested, but is not able to release any other patient-specific information due to privacy laws. Symptoms include high fever, convulsions and muscle weakness, and the illness can put someone in a comatose state. Less than one per cent develop more serious central nervous system issues, she said.

"It's a good reminder this is the time of year that we have to be concerned about West Nile regardless of where the traps are and really take precautions for ourselves".

The risk of West Nile virus infection is at a level not seen since 2012 when an outbreak infected 290 IL residents, the North Shore Mosquito Abatement District announced Thursday. The health department will also continue spraying pesticides until this year's first "freezing" temperatures. In each case the people had no symptoms at the time of donating blood through a blood collection agency, but whose blood tested positive when screened for the presence of West Nile virus. "Using insect repellent, covering bare skin and avoiding being outdoors during the hours of dusk and dawn are effective ways to help keep you from being bitten by mosquitoes".

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