By SDCN Editor
San Diego, CA–A 53-year-old La Jolla man is the first locally acquired case of West Nile Virus this year, the County Health and Human Services Agency said Friday.
He was hospitalized but is expected to recover from his illness, public health officials said.
There was one West Nile virus case reported in San Diego county in 2020, three in 2019, and two in 2018.
The virus is mainly a bird disease but can be transmitted to people by certain species of native San Diego county mosquitoes that first feed on an infected bird or animal and then bite a person.
At least 80% of people who become infected with West Nile virus never know it and never suffer any symptoms. About one in five people who are infected develop a fever and other symptoms such as headache, nausea, fatigue, skin rash or swollen glands. About 1 out of 150 infected people will develop serious illnesses.
Public health officials warn residents that the invasive Aedes mosquitoes can transmit tropical diseases, such as Zika, dengue and chikungunya, if they first bite an infected person and then bite non-infected people.
San Diego county residents can prevent mosquitoes from breeding on their property by dumping out or removing items that can hold water, such as plant saucers, garbage cans, buckets, toys, old tires, garbage cans, pools, and other wheelbarrows.
Residents can get mosquito fish, available for free by contacting the Vector Control Program to control mosquito breeding in backyard water sources such as unused swimming pools, ponds, fountains, and horse troughs.
For more information, visit Mosquito Fish Distribution Locations sandiegocounty.gov.