By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
New York City health officials announced they are investigating a possible human West Nile virus (WNV) case in an individual from the Bronx.
The case was recently discharged following a diagnosis of meningitis.
Officials report WNV ) has been detected in mosquitoes from all five borough of New York City (NYC). The first WNV positive mosquito pool this year was detected earlier than last year (6/14/2021 compared to 7/7/2020). To date in 2021, there have been a total of 188 positive mosquito pools (Bronx=23,
Brooklyn=11, Manhattan=1, Queens=86 and Staten Island=67), compared to 9 positive pools at the same
time last season (2020).
“Let’s not forget safety while enjoying summer fun,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Dave A. Chokshi. “Take simple steps to protect you and your loved ones from mosquito bites this summer: use insect repellent and covering arms and legs. Standing water can harbor mosquitoes. If you encounter pools of standing water, call 311.”
The West Nile virus was first detected in New York City 21 years ago. Since 1999, the number of human cases has ranged from 3 to 47 annually. Of the 359 West Nile virus neuroinvasive disease cases overall, 47 (13%) have died due to their infection. The number of positive mosquito pools has also varied from 40 to 1,010 per year. New York City has over 40 species of mosquitoes, but West Nile virus is transmitted primarily by several Culex species, including Culex salinarius and Culex pipiens.
West Nile virus infection can cause a mild or moderate febrile illness; and most (80%) of those infected have no symptoms at all. In some people, particularly those 50 and older or who have weakened immune systems, West Nile virus can cause a serious and potentially fatal infection of the brain and spinal cord. The most common symptoms are headache, fever, muscle aches, and extreme fatigue. Symptoms of more severe illness can also include changes in mental status and muscle weakness requiring hospitalization. Most patients who are infected with WNV will go on to fully recover from their illness. However, some continue to have problems months after infection. If a person has symptoms of West Nile virus, they should contact or see their doctor.
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