Long-Term Health Effects From West Nile Illnesses

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West Nile Disease

More than a year after being diagnosed with a West Nile virus infection, half of the patients have ongoing health complaints including fatigue, memory problems, headaches, depression, and tremors, according to an article in the Sept. 15 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases. The study reports that those patients who were diagnosed with the relatively benign manifestation of West Nile fever are just as likely to suffer later health problems as are those who were hospitalized with more severe West Nile virus-related illnesses such as encephalitis or meningitis.

People can become infected with West Nile virus when they are bitten by a mosquito that has previously bitten an infected bird. The virus was first found in the United States in 1999. In 2003, there were more than 9,000 human cases of West Nile virus

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