West Nile virus infection reported in Fairfax County

"The recent wet and increasing hot weather has created the flawless conditions for the Culex mosquito that carries West Nile Virus", Mark E. Wallace, Executive Director of the Weld County Health Department wrote in a release.

Three mosquito pools have tested positive for the West Nile Virus, the Portsmouth City Health Department reports.

The child experienced neurological symptoms and was hospitalized. The increase, officials said, is widespread across the county and has happened earlier this summer, compared with previous years.

A statement from the Shelby County Health Department on Thursday says the virus has been detected in mosquitoes throughout the county and officials are advising residents to take extra precautions. Humans, horses and other mammals can be infected.

Fairfax County health officials said they had five reports of people contracting West Nile virus past year but none in 2016.

West Nile virus, spread by the bite of an infected mosquito, can affect a person's nervous system.

Most people make a full recovery over weeks or months, officials said, but severe cases can lead to meningitis, paralysis and even death, according to experts. Those most susceptible are people 50 years old and older and those whose immunity is suppressed because of a disease such as cancer or diabetes. The types of mosquitoes that transmit WNV to humans most commonly breed in urban areas in places that hold water such as bird baths, plant pots, old toys and tires. About one in five will develop flu-like symptoms that can include fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea or rash.

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