Late Season WNV Case hits Pinal County

10/14/2013

FLORENCE – The Pinal County Public Health Services District announced on Monday that the county has seen its first locally acquired human West Nile virus (WNV) case of the 2013.

A male in his fifties from the Casa Grande area has been confirmed with the infection and is currently recovering.

With the weather cooling outside mosquito activity should be decreasing across Pinal County. However, mosquitoes that potentially carry West Nile virus are still active and could still pose a risk to residents.

WNV is transmitted to humans and animals through the bite of a mosquito. The overall risk of WNV to humans is low and the majority of people infected will not experience any clinical symptoms. For those that get symptoms fever, headache, tiredness and body aches are common. A small percentage of people may experience more serious forms of illnesses that can include lasting or permanent neurological effects. People over the age of 50 are more likely to develop serious symptoms of WNV if they do get sick and should take special care to avoid mosquito bites.

To help avoid getting West Nile virus infection, health officials recommend the following:
  • Eliminate standing water where mosquitoes can lay their eggs. Check for items outside the home that collect water, such as cans, bottles, jars, buckets, old tires, drums and other containers and get rid of them.
  • Change water in flower vases, birdbaths, planters and animal watering pans at least twice a week.
  • Repair leaky pipes and outside faucets, and move air conditioner drain hoses frequently.
  • Use insect repellent on exposed skin when you go outdoors. Use an EPA-registered insect repellent such as those with DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus. Even a short time being outdoors can be long enough to get a mosquito bite.
  • When weather permits, wear long-sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors. Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with repellent containing permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent will give extra protection. Don't apply repellents containing permethrin directly to skin. Do not spray repellent on the skin under your clothing.
  • Take extra care to use repellent and protective clothing during evening and early morning -- or consider avoiding outdoor activities during these times. The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many species of mosquitoes.
  • Repair or install screens on your home. Keep mosquitoes outside by having well-fitting screens on both windows and doors. Offer to help neighbors whose screens might be in bad shape. Don’t forget to make sure that screens are repaired on tents when camping.

Horses are also susceptible to WNV. Horse owners are encouraged to talk with their veterinarians regarding the WNV vaccine for horses.

For more information about West Nile virus on the internet go to; http://www.cdc.gov/westnile/index.html 

You can also call the Pinal County Public Health Services District at (520) 866-7325 or the Arizona Department of Health Services at (602) 364-4562.

Version: 1.0 
Created at 10/15/2013 8:11 AM  by System Account 
Last modified at 10/15/2013 8:11 AM  by System Account 
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