Maine CDC has identified a human case of neuroinvasive Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus (EEE) in a mature adult who resides in York County.  The individual became ill in late August and was hospitalized.  Blood samples collected October 1 tested positive for EEE at a commercial lab.  The sample was forwarded to Maine’s Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory (HETL) where it tested positive on October 9, 2014.  Per established protocols, the sample has been sent to the U.S. CDC for further confirmation. The individual is recovering at home.

Image/ National Atlas of the United States
Image/ National Atlas of the United States

This is the human first case of EEE identified in a Maine resident.

Maine CDC has detected EEE virus in 22 mosquito pools in York County, and an emu in Cumberland County.  New Hampshire has identified EEE in humans, mammals and mosquitoes, and Massachusetts has identified EEE in mammals and mosquitoes.

Symptoms of EEE disease often appear 4 to 10 days after someone is bitten by an infected mosquito. If you or someone you know is experiencing flu-like symptoms, including fever and headache, contact your local medical provider. EEE is a more serious disease than West Nile Virus (WNV) and carries a high mortality rate for those who contract the serious encephalitis form of the illness. Symptoms may include high fever, severe headache, stiff neck, and sore throat. There is no specific treatment for the disease, which can lead to seizures and coma.

To date, according to CDC data, Maine has yet to report a WNV case this year, while the state has seen four imported chikungunya cases.

You can protect yourself and your family from WNV and EEE with a few simple steps, such as using effective mosquito repellent, wearing long sleeves and pants at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active, removing standing water from around your house so mosquitoes do not have a place to breed, and by checking doors and windows to ensure screens are in place and in good condition to prevent mosquitoes from entering your homeFor more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page