Beware of West Nile Virus Infection – The Colorado Times

There is no cure, so it is important not to get bitten by mosquitoes

Weld County reported an 80-year-old death from West Nile Virus. There have been six confirmed cases of West Nile infection in Colorado this season, with 135 cases reported in 16 counties in the state.

West Nile virus is transmitted to birds through the bite of an infected mosquito, which then in turn bites an infected bird. Hawks, owls and crows can become infected after eating a dead bird already infected with West Nile virus, and birds that eat infected mosquitoes can also become infected.

Humans can become infected by the bite of a mosquito infected with West Nile virus, or through blood transfusions and organ transplants.

70-80% of those infected with West Nile virus are asymptomatic, but after an incubation period of 2 days to 2 weeks, symptoms of fever, headache and muscle pain begin suddenly. It is accompanied by digestive symptoms such as loss of appetite and vomiting, and eye pain can also be felt. About 50% of all patients develop a skin rash on the back and chest, but it can disappear after about a week.

Serious infections are rare, but people over 50 and the elderly face a very high risk of serious infections, so pay special attention.

The CDC says that cases are being reported in most states in the continental United States, and that it is important not to get bitten by mosquitoes since it occurs in the summer and fall.

West Nile Virus Outbreak Reporting Area 2022 (CDC)

In areas where mosquitoes are common, use insect repellent and wear long-sleeved clothing to avoid mosquito bites, he said.

There is currently no vaccine or cure, so avoiding mosquito bites is critical.

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