Mainer diagnosed with rare mosquito-borne virus, CDC says
AUGUSTA (WGME) -- The Maine Center for Disease Control is warning Mainers after a Kennebec County resident was diagnosed with the mosquito-borne Jamestown Canyon virus.
The Maine CDC wants to raise awareness about Jamestown Canyon virus, Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), and West Nile virus (WNV), which are serious infections that are transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito.
Although rare, these diseases have potentially severe and even fatal consequences for those who contract them, according to the Maine CDC.
The Maine CDC says Jamestown Canyon virus is a relatively rare disease that can be carried by multiple mosquitoes including mosquito species that are present in Maine.
The Maine CDC says this case involved an adult from Kennebec County who had symptoms appear in early June. The case required hospitalization, but the person is recovering at home.
Symptoms of arboviral illnesses include fever and flu-like illness, and can result in encephalitis or meningitis.
Jamestown Canyon virus, as well as the West Nile virus and Eastern equine encephalitis, are viruses transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. They cannot be transmitted from human to human or animal to human.
The Maine CDC say the steps Mainers can take to protect themselves from mosquito bites include:
- Wear long sleeves and long pants
- Use an EPA approved repellent on skin and clothes - always follow the instructions on the label
- Take extra precautions at dusk and dawn
- Use screens on your windows and doors
- Drain artificial sources of standing water where you live, work, and play
The risk for being bitten by a mosquito is highest from dusk to dawn and when temperatures are above 50 degrees. These are the conditions when mosquitoes are most actively biting.
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