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West Nile found in Sauk, Milwaukee counties

Published On: Dec 24 2013 02:05:24 AM CST   Updated On: Aug 14 2013 08:04:30 PM CDT
West Nile - What is it


What is it? West Nile virus is an infection transmitted by mosquitoes, although in very small cases it has been spread through blood transfusions, organ transplants, breastfeeding and during pregnancy from mother to baby.


West Nile has been found in two dead crows in Sauk County and in mosquitoes in Wisconsin's largest city.

The Sauk County Health Department said the dead birds were tested for West Nile virus on Aug. 9.

According to Milwaukee's health department, officials there have confirmed the virus in mosquito pools for the first time this year.

The mosquitoes were collected and tested as part of the department's surveillance and prevention efforts.

“When we find these dead birds, we really just want to let people know that it’s out there. We want them to be aware and take the precautions. We want you to know the symptoms of West Nile Virus and if you think you have it, we want you to go to the physician or contact them as soon as possible,” said Matt Kachel an environmental health sanitarian.

There's been one confirmed case of West Nile virus in a human so far this year in Wisconsin, in a Dane County resident.

Last year, 57 cases of West Nile virus infection were reported among Wisconsin residents. That's the highest annual number of reported cases since surveillance of the disease began in Wisconsin.

Symptoms may begin three to 15 days after a bite from an infected mosquito. Those include fever, headache, joint aches, nausea, vomiting and fatigue. Some people don't get symptoms.