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West Nile Virus Teen Victim Relapses One Year Later

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ARLINGTON (CBS 11 NEWS) - A North Texas teen continues to battle the effects of the West Nile Virus nearly a year after being affected.  She’s battled swelling of the brain, fluid around the brain, chronic fatigue, dizziness and nausea.

15 year old Jordan Conner’s mother, Ebonie Conner, says she had to rush her daughter to the hospital this week when she woke in the middle of the night complaining of severe head pains.

“She had gotten out of bed,” Ebonie said. “She had put on her jacket and shoes.  I was over there working on the computer and she just said, ‘I’m ready now. I’m ready. I’m ready to go. Let’s go.”

Ebonie  says she rushed her daughter Jordan to the hospital.  She shot this video of Jordan about to receive a spinal tap to relieve the pressure of fluid on her brain. Ebonie said Jordan received two spinal taps this week. That raisies the total number of the painful proceedures Jordan has had since she contracted west nile virus last summer to seven.

Ebonie said the set back wasn’t a surprise because she’s learned the virus can affect her daughter at any moment.

“If I became used to it then I could miss it and Jordan could die,” Ebonie said. “You know what I mean? If I became used to I’d be desensitized.  You’re always aware. You’re always watching.”

The family has to make every penny count to get by.  Ebonie says repeated hospital stays have piled up more than $500,000  in bills.

“It feels like a dream. It does not feel like our life,” Ebonie said.  I cannot believe this story is our story.”

The Conners say they hope people heed the repeated warnings about the dangers of the west nile virus and learn from their misfortune.

“When you use insect repellant, when you dump the water, it is more than avoiding a mosquito bite,  you are protecting your life,” Conner said.

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