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West Nile Virus

FCIC: West Nile Virus
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West Nile Virus

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West Nile Virus is a disease that can cause brain infection, or encephalitis (en-sef-ul-eye-tis). However, the virus causes encephalitis only in rare cases.

Most people who get infected with the virus don't get sick. Others have symptoms like those of a mild flu (fever, headache, and feeling tired).

The virus is spread by mosquitoes. Mosquito season is April through October. Most cases of West Nile virus happen in the late summer or early fall.

How can I get it?

Can the virus be spread person-to-person? No.

What are the symptoms?

Rarely, the virus causes a very bad infection with the following:

If you have any of these symptoms, contact your doctor right away.

Who is most at risk?

Pregnancy and West Nile Virus

Is there a shot (vaccine) or treatment? No

Can you get tested for the West Nile Virus?  Yes

Ways to Protect Yourself

Avoid Mosquito Bites

Report Dead Birds

To Learn More:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
Call your state or local government
Call the American Mosquito Control Association at 1-732-932-0667.
Call the National Pesticide Information Center at 1-800-858-7378.

FDA Office of Women's Health:
October 2003

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