An Elmore County man, in his 50s, is the latest Idahoan to test positive for West Nile virus. His is the third confirmed human case of West Nile fever in Idaho in 2012, as many as all of 2011. Only six years ago, Idaho led the nation with almost 1,000 infections, contributing to 23 deaths.
The Central District Health Department reports that since mid-July, eight Idaho counties have reported mosquitoes containing WNV.
“With this increased activity, it’s important to fight the bite and protect yourself and your family,” said Sarah Correll, epidemiologist at CDHD.
WNV fever symptoms often include headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting, and sometimes swollen lymph glands or a skin rash on the chest, stomach, and back. In some cases, the virus can cause severe illness, especially in people over the age of 50.
Nationwide, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report 390 human cases of West Nile virus disease have been reported, including eight deaths, as of Aug. 7, 2012. This is the highest number of cases for the first week of August since 2004.