INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Health officials say the state's first human case of West Nile virus this year has been reported in southeastern Indiana and mosquitoes in nine counties have tested positive for the disease.
The Indiana State Department of Health said Wednesday that the case occurred in Ripley County, about 40 miles west of Cincinnati, Ohio. It provides no other details about it.
Adjacent Jefferson County, along the Ohio River, is one of the nine counties where mosquitoes have tested positive for the virus. Health officials say the others are Allen, Adams, Grant and Starke in northern Indiana; Vigo and Vermillion in the west; and central Indiana's Clinton and Hamilton counties.
Indiana had seventy-seven West Nile cases last year. A severe form of the disease can cause encephalitis, meningitis, or muscle paralysis.
State health officials recommend the following preventative measures:
· Avoid places where mosquitoes are biting;
· Apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaradin or oil of lemon eucalyptus to clothes and exposed skin;
· Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of the home; and,
· When possible, wear pants and long sleeves, especially if walking in wooded or marshy areas.
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