Health department issues WNV warning

LISBON — The Columbiana County Health Department is reporting that there were mosquitoes found in the Lisbon area tested positive for West Nile Virus (WNV) and warns residents throughout the county to stay vigilant of mosquito borne diseases and protect themselves.

There have been no human cases of mosquito borne disease in the county but there have been 14 cases of WNV and 11 cases of La Crosse encephalitis virus (LACV) across Ohio. There have also been eight equine cases in other counties.

Residents should do the following to prevent mosquito borne diseases: wear clothing treated with permethrin or other EPA registered repellent, apply repellents on exposed skin, keep window and door screens closed and in good repair to keep mosquitoes out of your house, empty standing water from flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet water dishes, discarded tires, and birdbaths, keep rain gutters clean, fix outdoor leaking faucets, clean ditches and fill holes that hold water with gravel or dirt. Consider using products containing bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (BTI), available at many garden and home improvement stores, to control mosquito larvae in containers that are too large to empty.

Most people infected with mosquito-borne viruses show no symptoms, however, people over age 50 years and children under the age of 16 are more likely to develop severe illness from the disease. Symptoms to look for are body aches, fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, confusion, weakness, stiffness and convulsions. Coma and paralysis occur in some cases and the virus can be fatal.

A vaccine is available for horses to protect them from this virus.

For more information contact the health contact at 424-0272, www.columbiana-health.org or on Facebook.

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