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First 2019 Human Case Of West Nile Virus In DuPage County

Tue September 10, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DUPAGE COUNTY-
The DuPage County Health Department is reporting the first human case of West Nile virus (WNV) in DuPage County for 2019. A Lombard resident in her 40s became ill in late August. 

Including this case, there here have been four human cases of WNV reported to date in Illinois in 2019.

A recent increase in mosquito batches testing positive for the presence of WNV prompted the DuPage County Health Department to encourage county residents to protect themselves from mosquito bites and the risk of contracting WNV.

WNV is transmitted to people by infected mosquitoes. Approximately one in five people who are infected with WNV will develop symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Less than one percent will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis (inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues).

The best way to prevent WNV is to avoid mosquito bites and follow the four Ds of defense:

• Drain: Drain those items that collect standing water around your home, yard or business. Scrub and refill pet water dishes and bird baths regularly.

• Defend: Use an insect repellent containing DEET when outdoors and reapply according to directions.

• Dress: Wear long pants, long sleeves and closed-toe shoes when outside to cover the skin.

• Dusk to Dawn: Wear repellent outdoors during these prime times for mosquito activity.

Approximately one-in-five people who are infected with WNV will develop symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Less than one percent will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis (inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues).

The Health Department monitors WNV activity by collecting and testing mosquitoes in traps located throughout the county. WNV activity generally decreases in the fall when cooler temperatures arrive and especially after the first frost of the season. More information on WNV is available at http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/diseases-and-conditions/west-nile-virus.

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