TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Exactly one week before summer officially begins, health officials are reporting the first human case of the West Nile Virus in Tarrant County.
This first case of the 2013 season involves a less aggressive form of the virus –West Nile Fever. The milder symptoms include headache, fever, muscle and joint aches, nausea and fatigue.
The patient is a female Fort Worth resident, in her 40s.
This first confirmed case of Tarrant County West Nile comes earlier than last year. In 2012, Tarrant County didn’t report its first human case of the virus until June 20.
During the 2012 season Tarrant County reported 280 human cases of West Nile, including 11 deaths.
According to Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) officials, up to 80-percent of people infected with West Nile have no symptoms. While most people infected generally recover on their own, symptoms can last for weeks.
In addition to the symptoms of West Nile Fever, more severe cases of West Nile Virus can also include neck stiffness, lethargy, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness and paralysis.
There is no specific treatment for West Nile.
North Texas health officials recommend residents adhere to the five D’s when it comes to controlling the presence of mosquitoes.
DRAIN—all areas of standing water including changing water in wading pools, birdbaths, and cleaning out gutters;
DEET—Use bug spray and protect clothing with repellents containing permethrin or DEET;
DRESS—Dress in light- colored clothing with long sleeves and wear long pants;
DUSK/DAWN—Limit outdoor exposure at dusk and dawn;
DOORS—Keep door and window screens in good repair
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