Texas ground zero for West Nile

Wednesday, August 22, 2012 - 4:17pm

The current outbreak of West Nile virus is the largest ever through August in the United States.
And Texas has the most cases of any state.
Both Gregg and Smith Counties have confirmed cases now.
And across Texas, the numbers are alarming.
As of this Tuesday, there were 1,118 cases in the US and so far, 41 people have died from the mosquito-borne virus.
Half of those deaths have been here in Texas.
So far, 586 cases have been confirmed.
There have been 21 fatalities reported in the state of Texas.
There are 7 confirmed cases in Gregg County, of which one of those was a fatality
There’s one case in Henderson County and 3 cases in Van Zandt.”
Today we learned that there are 5 patients in Trinity Mother Francis Hospital with confirmed cases, and ETMC has 3 confirmed and 2 pending.
First, the good news, most mosquitoes don’t carry the disease. Only about 1 in 500 may be infected.
And, 80% of those bitten by an infected mosquito do not get sick.
First identified in Uganda in 1937, it primarily infects birds.
Symptoms include fever, excessive sweating, chills, and general weakness.
Severe cases lead to a loss of consciousness that is near coma.
If you are over 50 you will have a tougher time with the disease, and to date…there is no vaccine for West Nile Virus.


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