West Nile Virus in Peak Season

By KBJR News 1

August 2, 2013 Updated Aug 2, 2013 at 9:51 AM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - We're in peak season for contracting West Nile Virus and health experts are advising people to take precautions.

Doctors say that the mosquito–transmitted virus is most likely to be contracted during the late summer or early fall.

Symptoms include sudden onset of high fever, nausea, backache and prolonged fatigue.

Medical experts advise wearing insect repellent and avoiding mosquito–ridden areas during dawn or dusk, when the insects are most active.

While West Nile can be fatal, doctors say fewer than one-percent of people infected suffer such severe reactions.

"It's the older adults, adults in their seventies to eighties, where the risk of death is much higher," said Dr. Timothy Burke, Infectious Disease Specialist at Essentia Health.

Wisconsin state health officials say a dead crow in Sawyer County tested positive for the virus this week.

Health officials say infected birds serve as an early warning that West Nile is in an area.