First sign of West Nile Virus this season found in Windsor

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With the summertime bringing about a higher number of mosquitoes in the province, Alberta Health Services wants to remind Albertans to take precautions necessary to protect themselves against West Nile virus infection. Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with repellent containing permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent will give extra protection.

West Nile Virus is still in Windsor-Essex County with a mosquito pool testing positive for the first time this year.

Although there were no reported cases in Elgin-St.

In 2002, the state Department of Health said there were more than 4,100 human cases of the virus in the country, including 284 deaths. Mosquitoes can then transmit it to other birds or to humans or horses.

Serious cases of West Nile virus are rare, but can cause swelling of the brain, loss of vision, paralysis and even brain damage. Only one in five people will actually develop symptoms.

Symptoms of the virus are often mild and may include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, a rash, muscle weakness or swollen lymph nodes. This severe illness is more common in those over 60 years of age and those with compromised immune systems.

A female Aedes aegypti mosquito is shown in this 2006 Center for Disease Control (CDC) photograph.

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