Published: Fri, August 24, 2018
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

Mosquitos that carry fatal virus spotted in Southend

Mosquitos that carry fatal virus spotted in Southend

One person has died, and a total of eight human cases of West Nile virus (WNV) have now been confirmed across MI.

The Department of health in Nassau County issued similar warnings in June after Eastern equine encephalitis virus was found in horses in the county.

"To date, there have been no human cases reported, no positive mosquito pools identified, and no positives identified by Canadian Blood Services through their screen program", Interior Health said in a release. Officials say most people who contract the virus have no clinical symptoms, but some may become sick three to 15 days after being bitten.

Those individuals can suffer brain swelling, inflammation of the brain lining and paralysis, and can potentially die from the virus. Those over the age of 50 and anyone with compromised immune systems are most vulnerable.

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"It only takes one bite from an infected mosquito to cause a severe illness, so take extra care during peak mosquito-biting hours, which are dusk and dawn for the mosquitoes that transmit West Nile virus".

This is the first evidence of West Nile virus activity in the province this year.

The hot and muggy weather is creating optimal breeding conditions for mosquitoes.

Officials continue to encourage people to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes by taking basic precautions to help to limit exposure.

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Although there is no vaccine or specific treatment for WNV, people should consult a physician if they develop symptoms such as high fever and headache.

Officials asked residents to remove any standing water on their property. The mosquitoes that carry this virus are common throughout the state, and are found in urban as well as more rural areas.

Install or Repair Screens - Some mosquitoes like to come indoors.

Residents should wear light coloured clothing, long trousers, long sleeves, as well as shoes and socks during peak mosquito times to prevent mosquito bites.

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"Wearing long sleeves, long trousers, kind of loose fitting clothing". Apply insect repellents sparingly to exposed skin.

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