Licking County finds its first West Nile Virus positive mosquitoes of 2017

FILE (Associated Press)
FILE (Associated Press)

JOHNSTOWN, OH (WCMH) — The Licking County Health Department says the county’s first West Nile Virus infected mosquitoes of the season were recently discovered in a trap set in the Johnstown area.

The results came in Tuesday for the trap set on June 22.

The area will be sprayed for mosquitoes beginning Wednesday.

“Every summer we find it,” said Chad Brown, director of the Licking Co. Health Department. “So it’s in the area. The key is to take those preventive measures.

“We are going to be spraying in that area tonight (Wednesday) to try and knock down the adult mosquito population. And then after we spray we will go back and set a trap.”

Mild WNV symptoms include fever, headache, body ache, nausea, vomiting, or a skin rash on the chest, stomach and back. In rare cases an infected person can develop severe symptoms, including high fever, neck stiffness, headache, stupor, disorientation, tremors, coma, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. Symptoms typically develop between three and 14 days after the bite. They can last for as short as a few days, up to several weeks.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about one in five people who are infected will develop a fever with other symptoms. Less than 1 percent of infected people develop a serious, sometimes fatal, neurologic illness.

WNV illness usually improves on its own but individuals may choose to seek medical attention if they are concerned. Persons experiencing more severe symptoms should seek medical attention immediately. Pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers are encouraged to talk with their doctor if they experience symptoms.

To learn more about WNV, click here to view CDC’s guidance.

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