Saturday, June 10, 2023

What is Powassan virus? One death has been reported in the US

As more cases of Powassan virus are reported in the United States, including the May 17 death of a 58-year-old man in Maine, many may be wondering what the disease is and how it can be prevented.

Although cases of the disease are rare, federal health officials are asking people to know the signs and take precautions where certain types of ticks are found.

Here’s all the information you need to know about the virus:

What is Powassan virus?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Powassan virus is a rare but often serious illness caused by a virus that is transmitted to people by infected ticks.

It belongs to a group of viruses that can cause meningitis, or encephalitis, or infection of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord, according to the CDC.

The CDC said the number of people sick with Powassan virus has increased in recent years.

Powassan virus symptoms

It takes a week to a month after the bite of an infected tick for symptoms of the disease to develop, and the virus can be transmitted within 15 minutes of the tick first attaching itself.

Health officials said that while most people infected with Powassan virus are likely to have no symptoms or a mild flu-like illness, some people will have severe illness that affects the central nervous system.

About one in 10 cases of severe disease is fatal, and about half of survivors experience long-term health problems.

The period of high risk for ticks begins in mid-May and lasts until July.

Severe cases may begin with fever, vomiting, headache, or weakness and quickly progress to confusion, loss of coordination, slurred speech, or seizures.

He added that there is no vaccine or specific treatment for the disease concerned. Severe disease is treated with hospitalization, respiratory support, and hydration.

How does Powassan virus spread and how do I stop it?

According to Manisha Juthani, commissioner of Connecticut’s Department of Public Health, using insect repellent, avoiding areas where ticks are likely to be found, and checking for ticks carefully after being outside can help prevent you or your children from becoming infected with the virus. may reduce the likelihood of ,

Juthani said the virus is usually spread through the bite of an infected blacklegged or deer tick.

In addition, Maine health officials offer the following tips for avoiding tick bites:

  • Know the habitat of ticks (wooded and brushy areas with tall grass) and be careful in areas where ticks may live.
  • Avoid these areas and stay in the middle of trails whenever possible.
  • Use an EPA-approved repellent on the skin. Use permethrin on clothing for added protection.
  • Check for ticks every day, and especially when you leave tick habitats and return home. Take a shower or bath after coming inside to remove the tick from your body. Also check clothing, equipment and pets.
  • Ask a veterinarian about tick bite prevention for dogs and cats.

With the arrival of tick season, many people may mistake some of the symptoms of Lyme disease for those of COVID-19.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
Latest news
Related news


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here