More Human Cases of West Nile Virus

The recent heavy rains may make it worse, according to state officials.

Two more Connecticut residents have tested positive for West Nile virus.

A person from New Haven and a person from Bridgeport both contracted the disease during the fourth week of August, before the arrival of Tropical Storm Irene, according to the Department of Public Health.

Both residents are in their 80s, and both were hospitalized with encephalitis, suffering from high fever, confusion, weakness and vomiting. It was unclear if either person had been released from the hospital.

"Mosquitoes are still active, and the recent rains have resulted in areas of standing water that provide them with ideal breeding grounds," said State Epidemiologist, Dr. Matthew Cartter.

Last week, the Health Department announced the state's first human case of West Nile virus, a person in Stamford who contracted the disease in the third week of August.

Mosquitoes trapped in 30 cities and towns have tested positive for West Nile virus.

The Health Department has several tips to avoid mosquito bites:

  • Minimize time outdoors at dusk and dawn
  • Be sure door and window screens are tight-fitting and in good repair
  • Wear shoes, socks, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts. Clothing material should be tightly woven.
  • Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors
  • Consider using mosquito repellent when it is necessary to be outdoors and always use them according to label instructions
  • The most effective repellents contain DEET or Picaridin
  • When using DEET use the lowest concentration effective for the time spent outdoors (for example, 6% lasts approximately 2 hours and 20% for 4 hours) and wash treated skin when returning indoors. Do not apply under clothing, to wounds or irritated skin, the hands of children, or to infants less than 2 months
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