First Human Case Of West Nile Virus Confirmed In Texas

AUSTIN (July 4, 2014) The Texas Department of State Health Services has confirmed the first human case of West Nile virus in the state this season.

The virus was confirmed in a patient from Travis County, but no further details were released.

The West Nile season typically runs from June through October.

Last year 183 human cases were confirmed in Texas and there were 14 deaths, officials said.

“West Nile virus can make people very sick, with symptoms that can last for weeks or months,” said Tom Sidwa, State Public Health Veterinarian and manager of the Zoonosis Control Branch.

“The best way to protect yourself is by using insect repellent every time you go outside,” said

The symptoms of the milder form of the disease, West Nile fever, include headaches, fever, muscle and joint aches, nausea and fatigue.

Symptoms of the more serious form, West Nile neuroinvasive disease, also include, stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness and paralysis.

As many as 80 percent of those who have the virus, though, will have no symptoms, health officials say.