Eastern equine encephalitis has been in the news more prevalently in Massachusetts over the last few years. Our state has had 12 fatal cases of EEE since 2010.
Where did EEE originate? Eastern equine encephalitis was first discovered in horses, of course. EEE has been around since the late 19th century. Believe it or not, EEE originated right here in Massachusetts. More than 70 horses died of a mysterious brain infection in 1831 in our state. This viral encephalitis can also zebras and donkeys. The first human cases of Eastern equine encephalitis were identified in the 1930's, when 30 children died of the disease. EEE is one of the most dangerous mosquito-borne illnesses. Though rarer than malaria, EEE is deadlier, with a 30% death rate.
Human Cases of EEE in Massachusetts Last Year
Eastern equine encephalitis is spread from infected mosquitoes, which makes Hingham mosquito control essential. Most cases occur in the late spring through fall, but there have been cases reported in the winter. As of late August 2020, there were three reported cases of EEE in Massachusetts. The third case, a 90-year-old man, contracted EEE in Plymouth County.
There are two types of EEE infection - systemic and encephalitic. Systemic cases of EEE occur acutely, with an abrupt onset of symptoms, which include fever, confusion, and muscle pain. There is no set treatment regimen for EEE, but patients can be treated based on their symptoms. Unfortunately, since EEE is a virus, antibiotics cannot be used to treat it. There is also no anti-viral course of treatment to-date. The encephalitic infection resulting from the virus often leaves survivors with cognitive impairments but is often deadly. Blood tests and a spinal tap are used to diagnose infection.
If you believe you might have been bitten by an infected mosquito, seek medical attention immediately.
Protect your family from the threat of EEE with Hingham mosquito control and protection.
There is no vaccination for Eastern equine encephalitis. The only hope in the fight against infection is mosquito control and protection. Massachusetts residents might remember aerial mosquito sprays in the summer of 2019, resulting from a number of cases of this deadly infection. In addition to municipal mosquito sprays, Hingham Mass residents must also choose professional mosquito control to protect the areas around their homes. Mosquito Squad of Boston Metro South offers mosquito barrier protection, is applied every two or three weeks from April through October. Embolden your fight against mosquito bites by practicing Mosquito Squad’s recommended 7 T's of mosquito control at home!
Mosquitoes are everywhere. When you are away from home, wear long sleeves and pants, light colors, and use some type of mosquito repellent, such as DEET. You do not want you or your family member to be the next known human case of EEE in Massachusetts.
Begin your Hingham mosquito control with Mosquito Squad of Boston Metro South today to help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home! The less chance you have of getting a mosquito bite, the less chance you have of contracting EEE. Call us today at (781) 471-5793.