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Indiana reports 1st human West Nile virus case of 2018

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Health officials are urging residents to take steps to protect themselves from mosquito bites after Indiana’s first human case of West Nile virus in 2018 was detected.

The Indiana State Department of Health says that the human case was confirmed Monday in Vanderburgh County – the Evansville area – and 168 mosquito samples in 27 Indiana counties have tested positive for the virus. Officials say they expect to continue to see increased West Nile activity throughout the state.

Mosquito bites can transmit the virus. Health officials note that even a container as small as a bottle cap can become a mosquito breeding ground, so residents should take to eliminate standing water.

Symptoms of West Nile virus include fever, confusion, muscles weakness and severe headache. More serious complications include neurological illnesses, such as meningitis and encephalitis.