PORTER COUNTY, Ind. (WISH) – State health officials said a person in Porter County tested positive for the West Nile virus.
According to the the Indiana State Department of Health, this is the first human case of West Nile in Indiana. Eighteen counties have tested positive for the virus so far in 2014. Those counties include: Allen, DeKalb, Delaware, Dubois, Greene, Hamilton, Howard, Jefferson, LaGrange, Lake, Marion, Marshall, Morgan, Pike, Rush, Steuben, Sullivan and Vanderburgh.
“This is the time of the year when Hoosiers are at a risk of getting West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne viruses,” said State Health Commissioner William VanNess, M.D. “You can prevent these diseases by taking precautions to avoid mosquito bites.”
Officials recommend the following preventative measures:
- Avoid being outdoors when mosquitoes are active (late afternoon and dusk to dawn and early morning);
- Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus or para-menthane-diol to clothes and exposed skin;
- Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of the home; and,
- When possible, wear pants and long sleeves, especially if walking in wooded or marshy areas.
West Nile virus can cause West Nile fever, a mild form of the illness, which can include fever, headache, body aches, swollen lymph glands or a rash. Some individuals will develop a more severe form of the disease with encephalitis or meningitis and other severe syndromes, including flaccid muscle paralysis.
For more information on West Nile, click here.