The Minnesota Department of Health has confirmed the first human case of West Nile virus disease in Minnesota this year.
Minnesota Department of Health epidemiologist David Neitzel says a St. Louis County man become ill in late May after traveling to south-central Minnesota. The man was treated for West Nile encephalitis and meningitis and is recovering.
"Fortunately, most people either are able to fight off this virus without symptoms or if they have an illness, they have what we call West Nile Fever, so bad headache, bad fever, viral rash, and are able to recover within a few weeks, but this particular case that was reported today was a more serious case," he said.
Neitzel urged Minnesotans should use mosquito repellent and limit outdoor activities during dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active. The type of mosquitoes that carry the virus are most commonly found in central and western Minnesota. The risk of human infection peaks in late July and August.
There have been 465 cases of West Nile virus disease and 15 fatalities since the virus was first found in Minnesota in 2002.