October 1, 2023

Connecticut stories year’s initially fatality, second circumstance of Powassan virus owing to tick chunk

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The Connecticut Department of General public Wellness (DPH) recently announced the state’s next situation of Powassan virus infection (POWV) and first fatality in 2022, in accordance to their press release. 

“This incident reminds us that inhabitants have to have to acquire actions to avoid tick bites now by way of the late slide,” mentioned Dr. Manisha Juthani, who is the commissioner of the state’s DPH. 

“DPH stresses the use of insect repellent this summer months and avoiding substantial-risk spots, this sort of as tall grass, in which ticks may possibly be discovered. It’s also essential to test meticulously for ticks just after currently being outside the house which can lower the probability of you and your relatives customers staying infected with this perilous virus.”

The woman affected individual, who was the state’s second documented circumstance who examined good for the virus this yr, was in between the age of 90 to 99.

She lived in New London County with a identified tick chunk, which was taken off two months prior to onset of signs or symptoms.

A shut up graphic of the lone star tick. A superior way to prevent tick bites is to dress in gentle coloured very long sleeves and tuck your trousers into your socks when  outdoors in tall grass, wear insect repellant, and to study your pores and skin for ticks when heading inside. (Screenshot: Youtube/FOX 13 Seattle)
(Screenshot: Youtube/FOX 13 Seattle)

She commenced to not truly feel nicely in early May, then was afterwards admitted to a neighborhood medical center complaining of fever, altered mental standing, headache and chest ache, but turned unresponsive in excess of the up coming two months and died on May 17. 


Screening executed at the Facilities for Disorder Management and Prevention (CDC) confirmed the existence of antibodies to POWV.

12 circumstances of POWV linked health issues have been described in Connecticut through 2017 to 2021, such as two which had been deadly. 

Connecticut’s 1st case with POWV was a male in his 50s, who was a resident of Windham County who turned unwell in late March just after a identified tick chunk. 

Closeup of a tick on a plant straw

Closeup of a tick on a plant straw

He was hospitalized with a central anxious method disease but was discharged from the healthcare facility and recovered at house. 

“Commissioner Juthani additional that POWV is usually spread via the chunk of an infected black-legged or deer tick. It takes a week to just one thirty day period following the chunk from an contaminated tick to establish indicators of POWV illness, and the virus can be transmitted in as little as 15 minutes soon after the tick to start with attaches,” the state’s push release claimed.

Although some people contaminated with the virus will have small to no signs, some will create intense health issues influencing the central anxious system.

This engorged adult lone star tick. Lone star ticks can transmit the pathogen that causes tickborne diseases such ehrlichiosis and Southern tick-associated rash illness, or STARI.

This engorged adult lone star tick. Lone star ticks can transmit the pathogen that triggers tickborne ailments this sort of ehrlichiosis and Southern tick-involved rash sickness, or STARI.
(Credit rating: NIAID (Picture by: Image Stage FR/NIH/NIAID/BSIP //Common Images Group via Getty Illustrations or photos))

Extreme instances may begin with fevers, headache, and vomiting that speedily progresses to confusion, decline of coordination, problem speaking or seizures.

Close to 10% conditions of significant sickness are deadly and close to 50 % of survivors knowledge extensive-term health and fitness issues, for every the launch. 

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There is no precise remedy or vaccine for POWV, but severe ailment may possibly call for hospitalization, respiratory guidance and hydration. 

To reduce tick bites, the wellbeing department endorses averting “grassy, brushy or wooded areas,” contemplating use of CDC-suggested mosquito repellents, accomplishing a skin check out straight away after returning indoors, and showering inside of two hours of coming dwelling.

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It also reminds the community that whilst ticks are most active from spring to tumble, they may well also be energetic throughout winter season when it is warmer exterior.

For far more facts on Powassan virus and how to avoid tick bites, click on here.