Emergency Alert: Dallas County Health and Human Services reports West Nile Virus death in Dallas
Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) reports the first West Nile virus death in Dallas County for 2017. The patient was a resident of the 75248 zip code of Dallas and was previously diagnosed with West Nile neuroinvasive disease Friday, July 14. The patient had underlying medical conditions. For medical confidentiality and personal privacy reasons, DCHHS does not provide additional identifying information.
West Nile virus (WNV) is a disease that is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Mosquitoes can become infected when they feed on the blood from infected birds. The infected mosquitoes can then transmit WNV to humans and animals. Severe WNV infections can cause neurologic complications such as encephalitis. Milder symptoms include fever, headache and muscle aches. There is no vaccine or specific treatment for WNV.
The best way to avoid exposure to West Nile virus is to avoid mosquito bites. Residents should use the 4Ds to reduce their risk:
- DEET All Day, Every Day: Whenever you’re outside, use insect repellents that contain DEET or other EPA approved repellents and follow instructions.
- Dress: Wear long, loose, and light-colored clothing outside.
- Drain: Drain or treat all standing water in and around your home or workplace.
- Dusk & Dawn: Limit outdoor activities during dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
For more information on mosquito prevention follow DCHHS on Facebook and Twitter or go to: www.dallascounty.org/department/hhs/mosquito_prevention.html.