The Zika Virus has owned the media since early spring, and for good reason, it can have devastating repercussions to those affected by it. In Central Massachusetts, all the cases of Zika have been transmitted while traveling to other countries. Right here in our backyard, there is a dangerous virus already within the local mosquito population that could result in a human case any time now. West Nile Virus (WNV) has been a real threat in Massachusetts for years, and this year is no different.
WORCESTER MOSQUITOES TEST POSITIVE FOR WEST NILE VIRUS
Just this past week mosquitoes tested in nearby Worcester were discovered to be carrying West Nile Virus. This came on the heels of the first human case of the season in neighboring Vermont; a WNV case that happens to be of the more dangerous neuroinvasive variety. Mid to late summer is mosquito-borne virus season. While many people have already scheduled a season of mosquito control, some may think it is too late or not necessary. Mosquito control is more necessary this time of the year than any other. With Eastern Equine Encephalitis and West Nile Virus typically emerging this time of year, taking steps to avoid mosquitoes and mosquito bites is important for lowering your risk and your pet’s risks.
WEST NILE VIRUS CAN BE VERY SERIOUS FOR THOSE WITH SOME HEALTH CONDITIONS
While West Nile Virus in humans is usually mild and goes unreported, it can be severe and even fatal in rare instances. We were reminded of the seriousness of WNV by the story out of Pennsylvania about a man who was born with only one healthy kidney. By the time he was 40 he had required a kidney transplant due to the stress on his single kidney working alone. He was healthy and doing well until contracting West Nile Virus from a mosquito bite in 2014. He was unable to fight off the infection and died at the age of 55. While only 1 in 150 will develop serious illness from West Nile infection, it is important that those in high-risk categories are made aware of the importance of mosquito control and the danger a mosquito bite can bring to them.
According to the CDC, serious illness from WNV can occur in people over the age of 60 and those with certain medical conditions such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and those who have received organ transplants.
While we cannot guarantee 100% protection against West Nile Virus, we know that the fewer mosquitoes you encounter, the lower your risks. If you fall into a high-risk category, we urge you to consider our traditional barrier spray for your yard. It will eliminate 85-90% of the mosquitoes on your property for up to 3 weeks. Our highly trained technicians will come back and spray every 2-3 weeks to keep your property mosquito-free all season long.