(Sept 1, 2004) -- LB's Dept. of Health & Human Services advises that as of Aug. 31, LB has had seven confirmed human cases of the mosquito-borne West Nile Virus (WNV) in 2004. The total includes one death, an elderly ELB woman on Aug. 9.
As of Aug. 20, LB's 2004 WNV cases totaled four (including the fatality); as of July 30, LB had zero known cases.
The CA Dept. of Health Services reports 370 WNV infections from 14 counties as of Aug. 31. 29 of these cases were first detected in asymptomatic individuals through screening done at blood banks...and four later became symptomatic.
Of the 345 WNV cases with symptoms, the agency classified 131 as West Nile fever cases, 126 as WNV neuroinvasive disease (encephalitis or meningitis), and 88 of unknown status.
WNV produces no clinical symptoms in roughly 80% of those bitten by infected mosquitoes, but causes flu-like symptoms in about 20%. It can lead to encephalitis (brain swelling) or meningitis in about 1 in 150 people bitten by WNV infected mosquitoes. There is no cure, only supportive therapies which include hospitalization in serious cases.
Statewide, CA has had ten West Nile virus-related fatalities as of Aug. 31. These were in Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.
CA DHS says WNV activity has now been detected in 53 of CA's 58 counties...with WNV-infected dead birds found in six new counties last week (Alpine, Amador, Colusa, Modoc, Monterey, and Tuolumne).