WORLD West Nile virus takes dozens of lives this year in US

WORLD

West Nile virus takes dozens of lives this year in US

Xinhua

07:11, September 29, 2018

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(Photo: Agencies) 

CHICAGO, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Health authorities in the US state of Illinois on Friday confirmed another human death due to West Nile virus (WNV) infection, bringing the nationwide fatality total this year to at least 36.

A DuPage County resident over the age of 65 who became ill in early September with WNV has died, the county's health department reported.

"The report of a death is a sad reminder that it's still important to protect yourself, protect your family against West Nile virus," said local health official Karen Ayala.

According to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a total of 1,077 WNV cases were recorded as of Sept. 18, with Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota reporting more than 100 cases in each state.

West Nile is a virus most commonly spread to people by mosquito bites. In North America, WNV cases occur during mosquito season, which starts in the summer and continues through fall.

Most people infected with WNV do not have symptoms. About one in five people who are infected develop a fever and other symptoms. Only one out of 150 infected people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, illness, affecting the central nervous system.

People are advised to use insect repellent and wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants to prevent mosquito bites.

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