Westmont, Illinois - Date Issued: Sept. 20, 2023
The DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) recently confirmed the first two human deaths due to West Nile virus (WNV) in DuPage County (Addison and West Chicago) in 2023. There have been 6 human cases reported in DuPage County this past year. WNV is transmitted to people by infected mosquitoes.
Approximately one in five people who are infected with WNV will develop symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. Less than one percent will develop a serious neurologic illness such as encephalitis or meningitis (inflammation of the brain or surrounding tissues). People over the age of 60, and those with certain medical conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, and organ transplants are at greater risk for serious illness. Anyone who experiences symptoms that cause concern should contact their healthcare provider.
The best way to prevent WNV is to avoid mosquito bites and follow the four D’s of mosquito defense.
WNV activity generally decreases in the fall when cooler temperatures arrive and especially after the first frost of the season. For more information, visit the CDC website and their Westmont Nile Virus information page.