September 21, 2018

South Dakota Health Department says West Nile Virus risk increasing

30 July 2018, 04:18 | Silvia Roy

South Dakota Health Department says West Nile Virus risk increasing

South Dakota Health Department says West Nile Virus risk increasing

The West Nile Virus has come to West Side.

The state Health Department reported Thursday that West Nile virus has been detected in humans or mosquitoes in 11 counties across South Dakota. It can be transmitted to people by the bite of an infected mosquito.

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The majority of people infected will show no symptoms, while a smaller number (around 20 percent) will experience fevers, headaches, body aches, nausea, and vomiting. No humans have been affected by the virus-borne mosquitoes.

Sheeley says wet, swampy areas are the ideal conditions for mosquitoes to breed, and spread disease. He began exhibiting symptoms of the infection and was hospitalized, but he has since been discharged and is recovering at home. Repellents with DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, para-menthane-diol, and IR3535 are effective. Although it may be hard to do when it's hot, wearing long-sleeves, long trousers and socks when outdoors will help keep mosquitoes away from your skin. Larvicide can help reduce mosquito populations in areas where standing water cannot be eliminated through traditional drainage methods.

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These precautions are especially important for people at high risk for WNV, including individuals over 50, pregnant women, organ transplant patients, individuals with cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure or kidney disease, and those with a history of alcohol abuse. Check rain gutters and drains.

According to the release, samples are being sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for confirmatory testing.

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"Other steps you can take to protect your family from West Nile virus are dumping or draining containers of water, using mosquito repellent, and contacting the District to get mosquitofish if you have a pool or spa that isn't being maintained", Dr. Scott recommends.

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