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West Nile Virus Reported from New York to Long Beach; The Center for the Biology of Chronic Disease (CBCD) Urges the Public to Take Precautions
Date:9/13/2013

Rochester, NY (PRWEB) September 13, 2013

Many people do not think about infection with the West Nile Virus (WNV). However, “As of Sept. 10, 2013, 117 human cases have been reported in 23 California counties, including 66 cases in Los Angeles County (1).” Moreover, “There have been six West Nile virus-related deaths this year in California (1).”

The virus is not limited to California. It is spreading. “For the first time this season, the Health Department has detected West Nile virus in New York City mosquitoes. The infected mosquitoes were collected from the Pomonok neighborhood in Queens and the Huguenot Beach neighborhood on Staten Island (2).”

The CDC says on its website that “West Nile virus (WNV) is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes (3).” In addition, “The incubation period for WNV disease is typically 2 to 6 days but ranges from 2 to 14 days and can be several weeks in immunocompromised people. An estimated 70-80% of human WNV infections are subclinical or asymptomatic. Most symptomatic persons experience an acute systemic febrile illness that often includes headache, weakness, myalgia, or arthralgia; gastrointestinal symptoms and a … rash also are commonly reported (3).”

Finally, Medscape reports on its website on a page last updated in January, 2012 that “In hospitalized patients in New York City, neurologic sequelae of the West Nile virus included severe muscle weakness, with approximately 10% of patients developing a complete flaccid paralysis. One in 150 West Nile virus infections results in encephalitis or meningitis, and the mortality rate from severe illness is 3-15%. Individuals older than 75 years are at particular risk. As the elderly population increases and the distribution of the West Nile virus spreads nationwide, a growing number of infected individuals may require comprehensive inpatient rehabilitation to overcome the virus's disabling effects (4).”

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