The first case of West Nile Virus this year in Oklahoma has been confirmed in Pittsburg County, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health.
Collections of mosquitoes that tested positive for West Nile have been reported in both Tulsa and Oklahoma City as well.
The disease is spread through the bite of the Culex mosquito, which feeds on infected birds and transmits the virus when biting humans, horses and some other mammals, a news release reports. This type of mosquito increases in numbers during mid to late summer when the temperatures climb and the weather pattern is dry.
Symptoms vary widely but include sudden onset of fever, headache, dizziness and muscle weakness. Most people recover in one to three weeks but there can be long-lasting complications including life-threatening development of meningitis or encephalitis.
Precautions to prevent mosquito bites include: