Jefferson County Sees First Mosquito With West Nile Virus

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Jefferson County has its first confirmed case of West Nile virus in a mosquito.

The insect was found on Fort Drum last month, said Jeff Leiendecker of the county's Public Health Department.

Fort Drum collects and analyzes mosquitos to track the virus.

Over the past decade, the county has seen confirmed cases of the virus only in dead birds.

West Nile virus is transmitted to humans from the bite of an infected mosquito.

There has never been a confirmed case of West Nile virus in a human in Jefferson County.

"It's not uncommon to still see viral activity even as the temperatures are cooling down because there is still possible transmissions happening," said Leiendecker

Infected birds and animals cannot transmit the virus to humans.

Most people infected with West Nile show no symptoms or only mild symptoms such as slight fever, headaches or body aches.

People with weak immune systems, however, can experience serious illness, including encephalitis, permanent neurological damage and death.

Symptoms of West Nile include fever, headache, body aches and fatigue.

About 80 percent of people bitten by a mosquito infected with the West Nile virus do not get sick.

 

Friday, October 24, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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