- Symptoms of West Nile virus
Most people (70 to 80 percent) who become infected with West Nile virus do not develop any symptoms.
However, about 1 in 5 people who are infected will develop a fever with other symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea or rash. Most people with this type of West Nile virus recover completely, but fatigue and weakness can last for weeks or months.
Less than 1 percent of people who are infected will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis (inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues).
The symptoms of neurologic illness can include headache, high fever, neck stiffness, disorientation, coma, tremors, seizures and paralysis.
People with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension and kidney disease, are also at greater risk for serious illness.
Recovery from severe disease may take several weeks or months. Some of the neurological effects may be permanent.
— Source: Centers for Disease Control
- Tips to avoid West Nile virus
To protect against mosquitoand vector-borne diseases, the following safety precautions are recommended by the California Department of Public Health:
Eliminate or manage all sources of standing water to discourage mosquito breeding.
Avoid spending time outside when mosquitoes are most active, especially at dawn and the first two hours after sunset.
If you are outdoors when mosquitoes are biting, wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts.
Apply insect repellent containing EPA-registered active ingredients such as DEET, Picaridin, IR3535 or Oil of lemon eucalyptus (PMD). Always apply according to label instructions.
Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have tears or holes.
— Source: Mosquito Vector Control Association of California
Posted: Wednesday, April 23, 2014 12:00 am
Thanks to a warmer-than-usual spring and an increase of areas where once-flowing rivers may have created pockets of standing water perfect for mosquito breeding, the Mosquito Vector Control Association of California is encouraging residents to put up their guard a bit earlier this year.
Additionally, the California State Legislature has declared this week as West Nile Virus and Mosquito and Vector Control Awareness Week to educate residents about the potentially deadly disease.
Wednesday, April 23, 2014 12:00 am.