West Nile Virus Claims First Orange County Victim of the Year

Wearing insect repellent, covering exposed skin when outdoors and avoid being outside during dusk and dawn to reduce the chance of being bitten by mosquitoes.

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What to Know

  • Clear properties of standing water that can attract disease-carrying mosquitoes.
  • Symptoms of West Nile virus can include fever, headache, body aches, fatigue or a skin rash.
  • People over age 50 and people with underlying medical conditions are at increased risk of serious complications from WNV.

Orange County health officials Tuesday confirmed the county's first death of the year due to West Nile virus.

The patient was an "elderly'' Tustin woman who died of West Nile infection complications, according to the Orange County Health Care Agency.

Health officials said the death should serve as a reminder to residents to take steps to clear their properties of standing water that can attract disease-carrying mosquitoes.

Symptoms of West Nile virus can include fever, headache, body aches, fatigue, swollen lymph glands or a skin rash. People with more serious WNV neuroinvasive disease can suffer severe headaches, neck stiffness, confusion, muscle weakness or vision loss, and they should seek medical care immediately.

People over age 50 and people with underlying medical conditions are at increased risk of serious complications from West Nile virus infection health officials said.

As of Friday, five West Nile-related deaths had been reported statewide, but that figure did not include a death reported last week in Los Angeles County, the first of the year in that county.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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