Published: Sun, August 12, 2018
Medical | By Marta Holmes

Number of West Nile infections grows

Number of West Nile infections grows

Here's a guide from the CDC.

Two positive test results for West Nile virus in Kitchener is a good reminder to residents in Waterloo region to take precautions to avoid being bit by mosquitoes, a health official says.

West Nile Virus was found to be present in mosquitoes collected for sampling last Thursday.

Be particularly careful at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.

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Also, be sure door and window screens are tight fitting and in good fix to avoid mosquito bites when indoors.

Landscape to prevent water from pooling in low-lying areas.

Change water in birdbaths frequently, at least once a week. Any item (s) or area (s) that has standing water for 7 days after a rain event can be a mosquito breeding area. More serious symptoms, such as severe headaches, neck stiffness, confusion, muscle weakness or paralysis, occur more rarely, but people who develop these symptoms should seek medical care immediately.

"One in 150 people will develop a neurological condition like encephalitis and things like that", said Sookoo.

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According to Wayland Health, the East Middlesex Mosquito Control Project is seeing "West Nile Virus positive pools in much of our district which is typical for this time of year". This is not Fairfield's first human case of WNV, this is the seventh case since 2000 and 33rd case in Fairfield County since 2000. West Nile virus infections in humans have been reported from June through October; however, most reported becoming ill with West Nile virus in August and September.

West Nile fever generally resolves itself without treatment, but unsafe brain infections such as encephalitis or meningitis can develop in 1 out of 150 people, according to the press release. To report a sick or dead crow, blue jay, or raven, call the Dead Bird Reporting Hotline at 1-800-433-1610.

For more information on West Nile virus, visit the DHS website.

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