Published: Fri, June 29, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

West Nile found in Winnipeg mosquitoes for 1st time this season

West Nile found in Winnipeg mosquitoes for 1st time this season

The California West Nile Virus website reports that the West Nile Virus was found in five people last week, including in Fresno and Kern counties. To prevent mosquito bites, wear long sleeves and long trousers when out from dusk until dawn, when mosquitoes are most active.

"Those people are at a higher risk of developing severe symptoms like a coma, tremors, muscle weakness, and paralysis" Indiana State Health Department Epidemiologist Taryn Stevens said.

The good news is that no human cases of the virus have been identified in the province, according to Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living.

When outdoors, residents are advised to use repellents containing DEET, permethrin, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus. Instead, people must "fight the bite" to help prevent infection. These areas are scheduled to be sprayed for mosquitoes as a part of the Health Department's mosquito control program.

Improve landscaping to prevent standing water around the home.

If going outside, use an EPA-approved insect repellent.

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Make sure doors and windows have tight-fitting screens.

The risk of West Nile virus infection will be high until mosquitoes go away after the first hard frost.

Illness from West Nile virus is usually mild and includes fever, head and body aches, and possibly a rash.

■ Install or fix screens in your home so they are fit tightly.

Three residents were diagnosed and hospitalized due to West Nile infections previous year. However, serious illness that involves the nervous system, such as encephalitis and meningitis, and death are also possible.

There is no specific treatment or vaccine for West Nile virus in people. If someone develops any of the symptoms listed above, they should see their healthcare provider for evaluation and care.

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