West Nile Virus

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by PVLady, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. PVLady

    PVLady New Member

    Many here already have compromised immune systems - it would be harder for any of us to handle this virus. Just a warning here to take precautions to avoid getting WNV.... (as they say "a ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure")

    What are the symptoms associated with West Nile Virus?

    Most people who contract the virus exhibit no symptoms. Some will have flu-like symptoms such as fever, headaches, and body aches. Also, swollen lymph nodes or a mild rash could be a sign of West Nile Virus infection.

    The most serious illness caused by the virus is West Nile Encephalitis. Symptoms of this condition may include the rapid onset of severe headache, high fever, stiff neck, confusion, loss of consciousness (coma), and muscle weakness.

    This is a very rare condition, but if contracted it may lead to permanent brain damage or death.


    West Nile Virus Cases Rise 50-Percent In L.A. County
    09-15-2008 7:00 AM

    (Los Angeles, CA) -- Twice the number of West Nile virus cases have been recorded in L.A. County in 2008 compared to last year. The 50-percent increase worries county health officials because the trend may mean this year could be worse than 2004 for infections and deaths.

    In 2004, 779 people in California were infected, with 29 deaths statewide. Officials say they track the disease by watching for dead birds that are found infected, and that number has also risen in 2008.

    The first victim in L.A. County and the fourth this year in Southern California died Friday.


    Creating Defense Against the West Nile Virus, America's Most Rapidly Spreading Pest-Borne Disease
    Harvard Public Health Expert Offers Tips in Prevention

    Experts predicting another summer of increasing cases of the West Nile Virus, including more fatalities, say a combination of preventative methods is the best way to combat the mosquito-borne disease.

    Dr. Kimberly Thompson, a specialist in risk analysis at the Harvard School of Public Health, warns that people need to be vigilant this summer in taking precautions against mosquitoes, which may be carrying the disease.

    "It is best to take a holistic approach to mosquito control," says Dr. Thompson.

    "This includes taking physical measures to reduce breeding grounds and risk, using pest control products properly when needed, and working within local communities to ensure civic leaders are providing education about West Nile Virus and protection from mosquitoes."

    The following are 10 tips to avoid mosquito bites and infection of West Nile Virus:

    1. Make sure doors and windows have tight fitting screens. Repair or replace screens that have tears or holes.

    2. Use mosquito repellants on exposed skin whenever you are in an area where mosquitoes may be present. Repellants provide extra protection individuals need when exposed to mosquitoes and other disease-carrying insects.

    3. Eliminate standing water, including clogged gutters, pool covers, empty wheelbarrows, and pools of water anywhere in the yard. Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar water-holding containers that have accumulated. Be sure to remove used tires, which are a common haven for mosquito breeding.

    4. Remind or help neighbors to eliminate breeding sites on their properties.

    5. Wear long sleeves, long pants, socks and closed shoes.

    6. Encourage local officials to treat small ponds with larvacide and consider stocking larger ponds with larva eating fish as additional control.

    7. Ensure that organizers of summertime activities for youth and the elderly - such as summer camps, park and recreation centers, and senior centers are proactively using pest control strategies and products.

    8. Beware of the times mosquitoes are most active; typically at dusk and dawn, April through October, and avoid prime mosquito locations including marshes and wetlands.

    9. Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs. If not in use keep covered.

    10. Learn more about your community's mosquito control program. If local elected officials have not implemented a mosquito control program, advice about pest control products for consumers and local governments is available at westnilevirusfacts.org and hsph.harvard.edu/mosquito/. Ensure that local community leaders are giving protection to the public through integrated mosquito management programs.

    For people who wonder about the risks of using of pest control products and repellents to control mosquitoes, Dr. Thompson says: "Get the facts.

    Pest control products are exhaustively tested before they reach the market, and they can and should be used to promote public health and safety when needed. West Nile Virus is a real threat and you can make smart choices to protect yourself and others around you


    Stop Raising Mosquitoes in
    Your Yard and Home...

    Cans and Buckets. Discard them, store them inside, or turn them
    upside down.

    Old Tires. Store in a basement or shed where they won't collect

    Barrels and Garbage Cans. Drain them and store tightly covered
    or upside down.

    Roof Gutters. Clean out leaves and debris that trap and hold water. Repair sagging gutters.

    Bird Baths. Change and clean the water every few days.

    Wading Pools. Change the water every few days, but make sure that the water you dump
    out drains away. Turn upside down when not in use.

    Canoes and Boats. Cover with a tight-fitting tarp, or turn upside

    Open drain plug and tilt boat so water flows out.

    Ornamental Ponds. Stock with small fish that will eat developing

    Puddles and Swampy Areas. Grade to drain off the water, or fill
    with dirt.

    Flower Pots and Vases. Drain standing water from pot saucers and change water in
    outdoor vases every couple of days.

    Bromeliads. Check leaf bases for water and mosquito larvae.
    r Leaky Faucets and Hoses. Repair leaking faucets and drain area

    Tarps or Plastic Sheets. Make sure that coverings on boats,
    swimming pools, compost piles, etc. are pulled tight and sloped so that
    rainwater runs off.

    Pet or Livestock Watering Pans. Empty frequently, clean, and

    Wheelbarrows. Store under cover in a basement or shed or upside down.

    Drainage Basins. Remove stagnant water from sump pits, dry wells, or drainage basins.

    Drainage Ditches. Make sure that water flows freely.

    Cesspools and Septic Tanks. Make sure systems are tightly-covered, operating properly,
    and not overflowing.

    Storm Drains. Check to see that water flows freely and is not blocked by leaves and debris.

    Tree Holes. Remove stumps or fill stumps or tree holes with sand or other filler.

  2. Janalynn

    Janalynn New Member

    Thank you PVLady for providing good information. In the last few years we had a number of infected people and subsequent deaths in our area (Colorado). Thankfully that number has decreased quite a bit this year.

    My girlfriend knew someone(her hairstylist) who was infected with West Nile several years ago. He lost his sight. We are vigilant about mosquito repellant when we go out and we are always careful not to have any standing water around.

    Thanks for the warning........