Mosquito-Transmitted EEE Virus Has Led to Federal Warnings
Health officials have confirmed 11 reports of Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) related deaths so far in 2019.
As of September 2019, Connecticut confirmed three deaths caused by the mosquito-transmitted virus. Three people have died in Massachusetts, four more died in Michigan, and one person died in Rhode Island — all a result of the virus.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an average of seven human cases of EEE are reported each year. Approximately 30 percent of all cases result in death.
With 11 confirmed deaths caused by EEE, the United States has seen an uptick in reported cases. CNN reported 27 confirmed cases in six states in 2019. The reported cases come from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Michigan, Connecticut, New Jersey, and North Carolina.
What is Eastern Equine Encephalitis?
Eastern equine encephalitis, also known as Triple E, sleeping sickness, or EEE, is an arbovirus — a disease spread by a mosquito or other arthropod.
A more common arbovirus spread by mosquitoes that comes to mind for many of is West Nile virus.
The EEE virus (EEEV) transmitted through a bite by an infected mosquito and can lead to an inflammation of the brain known as encephalitis.
EEE can lead to ongoing neurological problems, and in some cases, death.
People under the age of 15 or over the age of 50 have the highest risk for developing a disease when infected with EEEV.
Those who live in wooded areas, work outside, or participate in outdoor activities also have a greater chance of potential exposure.
Symptoms of EEE
A person bitten by an infected mosquito can develop symptoms of EEE in approximately four to 10 days.
Symptoms of EEE include the sudden onset of headaches, fever, chills, and vomiting. It can then progress into disorientation, seizures, and then a coma.
Unfortunately for humans, there is no treatment for EEE. Anti-viral drugs and antibiotics have not proven to be effective against the virus. There is an EEE vaccine for horses, however.
In severe cases supportive therapy including hospitalization, respiratory support, IV fluids can be used to help make the person a little more comfortable.
How to Prevent Mosquito Bites & EEE
It can be impossible to do completely but preventing mosquito bites is the best form of EEE prevention.
People engaging in outside activities are encouraged to wear long-sleeved shirts and pants and use insect repellent.
Homeowners and business should also take precautions to eliminate a mosquito infestation on their property.
Standing water is an ideal place for mosquitoes to lay their eggs. Problem areas could be wetlands, pools, plastic toys, tarps, even plant saucers and water bowls.
Removing debris and/or clutter from the property can help prevent a mosquito infestation.
To further reduce the possibility of a mosquito infestation, Catseye Pest Control offers a one-of-a-kind organic program that helps eliminate mosquitoes and ticks.
Our Organic Tick and Mosquito Program includes an in-depth inspection of the property, customized treatment plan, and monthly visits to create an organic protective barrier around the property.
The products our technicians use is environmentally friendly, safe for your family and pets while providing you with the protective barrier your property needs.
To learn more about how Catseye can protect you from unwanted pests, contact our pest and wildlife professionals today.