5 symptoms of West Nile virus

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by Catherine Holland

azfamily.com

Posted on August 23, 2011 at 12:21 PM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 23 at 1:46 PM

PHOENIX -- Most people will agree that mosquitoes are annoying, but what's worse is that they can be hazardous to your health because they can carry West Nile virus.

The middle of August through the end of August is the prime breeding time for mosquitoes here in the Phoenix metro area.

Dr. Art Mollen sat down with Scott Pasmore to go over some of the symptoms of West Nile virus, which can be potentially deadly.

Symptoms can include, high fever, headache and muscle aches, a stiff neck, vomiting and seizures or tremors. These symptoms develop between three and 14 days after a bite.

Mollen said the very young, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems are the most at risk.

While there is a vaccine for horses to protect them from West Nile virus, there is not one for humans.

There's also no specific treatment for West Nile virus so the key is to treat the symptoms.

The best thing you can do, Mollen, said is concentrate on prevention. That includes using mosquito repellent and making sure there are no standing pools of water to attract mosquitoes in the first place. When outside, cover up as best you can and avoid wearing perfume or cologne and those can often appeal to mosquitoes.

Mollen also talked about the upcoming 3TV Phoenix 10K, which benefits the Mollen Foundation for Preventing Childhood Obesity. The date for the 26th annual event is Nov. 6. It features a 10K run, a 5K run, a 5K walk, the Mollen Mile for Kids and a 50-yard kids' dash. Online registration is open at Phoenix10K.com.

For more information on Dr. Mollen, visit www.mollen.com or call 602-264-9806.

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