Health department offers prevention tips amid first West Nile Vi - Tucson News Now

Health department offers prevention tips amid first West Nile Virus death in AZ

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Arizona has its first reported West Nile Virus death of 2013.

Maricopa County's public health director says an elderly woman from the suburbs southeast of Phoenix died earlier this month.

The Cochise County Health and Social Service Department reminds the public of precautionary practices for West Nile Virus protection.

The mosquito-born virus was first detected in the United States in 1999 and in Arizona in 2003.

Approximately 80 percent of infected people develop either no or few symptoms, and the remaining 20 percent reportedly experience mild signs of illness, including headache, body aches, fever greater than 100.4 degrees, skin rash, nausea and swollen lymph glands.

The elderly are more susceptible to catching a disease stemming from the virus. Less than one percent has caught encephalitis, a brain-swelling disease, as a result of West Nile virus. Those with developing symptoms should call a doctor. Otherwise, most people can recover on their own.

The health department says the virus is most prevalent during "mosquito season," which lasts from July through October in Cochise County. It primarily affects humans, birds and horses. Also, people with the virus are not contagious to other people, according to a news release.

Approximately 114 possible human cases of the virus were tested in Arizona as of July 30, though only eight were deemed "probable" and none were confirmed.

According to the Cochise County Sheriff's Office, there is neither current treatment nor prevention, though protecting yourself from mosquito bites is recommended.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention encourage the public to avoid outside activity at dusk and dawn during mosquito season; use insect repellant; wear long sleeves and pants; install or repair windows and door screens; and do not leave open water containers outside, including flower pots, buckets and kiddie pools.

The prevention center also recommends horse owners to consider vaccinating their horses against the virus.

Copyright 2013 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

  • Local newsMore>>

  • TUCSON'S TOP 3: What you need to know to start your day

    TUCSON'S TOP 3: What you need to know to start your day

    Monday, May 29 2017 7:58 AM EDT2017-05-29 11:58:01 GMT
    Police taped off part of E 32nd Street to investigate a deadly shooting early Sunday morning (Source: TPD).Police taped off part of E 32nd Street to investigate a deadly shooting early Sunday morning (Source: TPD).

    Good morning! We're getting your day started with top stories you may have missed, plus other headlines you need to be following today.

    Good morning! We're getting your day started with top stories you may have missed, plus other headlines you need to be following today.

  • Arizona softball's season ends after 6-5 loss to Baylor

    Arizona softball's season ends after 6-5 loss to Baylor

    Monday, May 29 2017 1:59 AM EDT2017-05-29 05:59:54 GMT
    Source: KOLDSource: KOLD

    The University of Arizona Softball team lost 6-5 to Baylor on Sunday evening at Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium in Tucson. The loss ends the Wildcats' season as they have been knocked out of the 2017 Women's College World Series in the super regional round. 

    The University of Arizona Softball team lost 6-5 to Baylor on Sunday evening at Rita Hillenbrand Memorial Stadium in Tucson. 

  • HAPPENING NOW: Water main break closes part of Mission road

    HAPPENING NOW: Water main break closes part of Mission road

    Monday, May 29 2017 12:30 AM EDT2017-05-29 04:30:20 GMT
    Source: Tucson WaterSource: Tucson Water

    A water main break closes a stretch of road on the southwest side. Tucson Water says northbound lanes on Mission road near Ajo Way will be closed while crews respond to the break. 

    A water main break closes a stretch of road on the southwest side. Tucson Water says northbound lanes on Mission road near Ajo Way will be closed while crews respond to the break. 

Powered by Frankly