Texas West Nile Outbreak Most Deadly in the Nation by info1099


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									Texas West Nile Outbreak
Most Deadly in the Nation

Summary: The West Nile virus has infected at
  least 552 people in Texas, according to the
Texas Department of State Health Services. So
 far 21 people have died, compared to only 2
 West Nile-related deaths in the state during

     (August 21, 2012) – Texas officials have declared a state of
  emergency as the West Nile virus continues to spread, causing
 sickness and even death, especially among the elderly and those
with weakened immune systems. So far Texas leads the US in both
 illness and fatalities, with 552 confirmed West Nile cases and 21
deaths. Health officials in neighboring Louisiana have reported only
  92 cases with 6 deaths, while Oklahoma has had 61 cases and 3

 West Nile virus is spread by mosquitos, which pick up the
  virus by feeding on infected birds and then pass it on to
  people. While 80% of those who become infected with
West Nile virus have minimal or no symptoms, about 20%
of infected individuals will show mild symptoms including
headache, fever, skin rashes, joint pain, and swollen lymph
glands. Most people with mild cases of West Nile virus will
 recover fully even without medical treatment, although
     the federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC) does
 recommend that anyone who develops these symptoms
  following a mosquito bite should see their doctor right
Less than 1% of infected individuals will develop severe
symptoms such as high fever, headache, neck stiffness,
  disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle
weakness, loss of vision, numbness, and paralysis. These
 symptoms may last for several weeks or even become
            permanent in some instances.

  And in the most extreme cases, infection with West Nile
      virus can cause serious neurologic illness, such as
encephalitis, meningitis, or death. According to the CDC, the
people most at risk for serious reactions are adults over age
     50 and individuals with underlying certain medical
 conditions including cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure,
   kidney disease and organ transplants, along with those
      whose immune systems have been compromised.

  The greatest risk for West Nile virus infection typically
begins in June and runs through September in the US, with
cases peaking in mid-August. Anyone at risk for developing
   severe reactions to West Nile infections is advised to
     actively take precautions to avoid being bitten by

The CDC recommends using insect repellants when going
 outside; wearing long sleeves and pants from dawn to
 dusk; installing window and door screens and keeping
     them in good repair; using air conditioning when
possible rather than opening windows; and removing any
   open sources of standing water that is not changed
 frequently such as flowerpots, birdbaths, buckets, old
  tires, and children's wading pools. More information
    about West Nile virus symptoms, treatments and
         infection prevention tips can be found at
     In addition to the CDC's official site, a number of other
websites are helping to spread awareness about the alarming
rise in West Nile virus infections and fatalities in Texas. Among
                             these is

 a Facebook fanpage that offers an online community where
  people can share their thoughts and comments about the
               latest Texas news and events.

"We feel it is very important to get the news out about how
 dangerous the 2012 West Nile outbreak can be for seniors
   and others whose health puts them at risk," notes page
administrator S.S. Ober-Lehn. "And Facebook's international
   appeal makes the Texas Proud to Call It Home fanpage a
 natural place for anyone who is concerned about the rising
  incidence of West Nile infections and fatalities in Texas to
   come together to discuss this serious situation and help
                 spread awareness about it."

To find out more about current news and events
              in Texas, please visit


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