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West Nile case confirmed in Tulsa County

A Tulsa County resident has contracted West Nile virus, the second Oklahoman sickened by the virus this season.
FROM STAFF REPORTS Modified: August 21, 2014 at 9:17 pm •  Published: August 21, 2014

A Tulsa County resident has contracted West Nile virus, the second Oklahoman identified as being sickened by the virus this season.

The Tulsa Health Department confirmed Thursday that a resident older than 50 had contracted the mosquito-borne illness. No further details about the person’s gender or age were made available.

In July, the Oklahoma state Health Department announced the first case had been confirmed in a resident of Major County.

In mid-July, Tulsa Health Department officials confirmed that a sampling of mosquitoes from Tulsa County tested positive for West Nile. Of the 486 trap samples tested this season, five mosquito traps have been confirmed positive for West Nile in Tulsa County to date.

West Nile virus is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes. Horses are also at risk, although there is a vaccine for them. There is no West Nile vaccine for humans. The highest risk of contracting West Nile in Oklahoma is from July through October.

Common symptoms of West Nile Fever include headache, fever and tiredness. In some cases, West Nile virus can cause severe neurologic disease, such as meningitis, which is swollen membranes in the brain and spinal cord; paralysis or loss of muscle function; or encephalitis, which is swelling and inflammation of the brain, according to the state Health Department.

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