Two More West Nile Virus Infections Reported
The Corpus Christi–Nueces County Public Health District has announced two new human cases of West Nile Virus (WNV) infections, which brings the total of 2016 cases to four. According to the Health District, there were no Nueces County cases reported in 2015 and only two cases in 2014.
Health officials said the persons infected reported they were not using mosquito repellent when they were outside, which is of great concern because of the positive mosquito pools in the area. The Department of State Health Services has confirmed 19 WNV mosquito pools in Nueces County. Two of the four patients diagnosed with WNV still remain under doctor’s care. For privacy reasons, the Health District will not be releasing any further patient information.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, WNV is an arbovirus most commonly spread by infected mosquitoes. WNV can cause febrile illness, encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord). Most people (70-80%) who become infected with WNV do not develop any symptoms. Symptoms can include the following:
- Body Aches
- Skin Rash
- Swollen Lymph Glands
“Mosquito prevention is vital for the residents of Nueces County,” states William Burgin, Jr., M.D., Local Health Authority. “Everyone, regardless of your proximity to the zip code associated with the positive mosquito pools, should practice mosquito bite prevention and wear a repellent.”
Because none of the persons infected with WNV were wearing mosquito repellent when they were outside, Dr. Burgin reminds residents to take the necessary precautions to reduce the risk and spread of the WNV illness. “Use DEET containing repellents every time you go outside, drain standing water including empty cans, tires, buckets, clogged rain gutters, and sauces under potted plants. As well as, remember to wear long sleeves and pants at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active,” Dr. Burgin said.
In addition, residents should try to stay indoors and use air conditioning as much as possible. Also, make sure screens on doors and windows are inspected for holes and openings and properly mended to keep mosquitoes and other insects from entering the home.
For more information on WNV go to the Health District website at www.ccpublichealth.com.