By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

Eastern Equine Encephalitis

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services reported a Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) in a 12-year-old quarterhorse in Hardee County.

Florida map/National Atlas of the United States

The animal was euthanized and the vaccine status of the horse was unknown.

This is the 17th confirmed case of EEE for 2021.

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) is spread to horses and humans by infected mosquitoes, including several Culex species and Culiseta melanura.

In horses, the virus causes inflammation or swelling of the brain and spinal cord.  General symptoms include central nervous system signs such as: head pressing, convulsions, lack of response to facial stimulation, fever above 103 degrees, ataxia, paralysis, anorexia, depression and stupor.  Other symptoms may include irregular gait, teeth grinding, in-coordination, circling, and staggering.  All symptoms may not be exhibited by an infected horse.

The mortality rate in horses from EEE is almost 90%.

West Nile virus

The Florida Department of Health in Collier County issued a mosquito-borne illness alert recently after two additional human West Nile virus (WNV) cases.

A total of three human cases of WNV have been confirmed in Collier County and one in Miami-Dade County, bringing the total to four to Florida.

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West Nile virus is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito.  Common symptoms include fever, nausea, headache and muscle aches.  Symptoms may last from a few days to a few weeks.  However, four out of five people infected with West Nile virus will not show symptoms.  In rare cases, severe illness including meningitis or encephalitis, or even death, can occur.  People older than 50 and immunocompromised individuals are at higher risk for severe illness.

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