Triple E Virus
EEE is an Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus recently found in the eastern part of United States Of America. It is a rare but serious viral disease spread through mosquitoes Culiseta melanura that can affect mainly humans and horses and occassionally birds.Triple E virus primarily affects the layer of brain (meningis). In United States, EEE is mainly seen in Florida, Georgia, Michigan Massachussetts, Newyork, NewJersey, N. Carolina and S.Carolina. Recently (2012) EEE seriously affected the North eastern part of United States like Massachussetts. EEE virus is commonly seen in and around fresh water swamp areas as they breed easily in water.
Risk and Transmission of EEE
Eastern Equine Encephalitis is transmitted to mammals via mosquitoes because these mosquitoes feed on the birds. The virue is transmitted only when the infected mosquito bites the mammals or humans. EEE is not spread from human to human or human - animals and animals - humans. EEE affects people of all ages, however people above 55 years and younger than age of 15 are at the greastest risk of getting infected by EEE.
Signs and Symptoms of EEE
The symptoms start appearing 4 to 10 days after the bite of an infected mosquito and symptoms last for 1-2 weeks. It may take longer time to completely recover from the viral infection.
- Sudden onset of high fever with chills and vomiting
- Severe headaches
- Neurological problems - As the disease progresses, person may complain of loss of sensory and motor function, seizures, neck stiffness due to inflammation of brain (encephalitis), coma and even death.
Treatment Of EEE
No specific treatment is available as of now. Antibiotics are not effective as EEE is caused by virus and anti-viral treatments are not yet available (not discovered). Also human vaccines are not discovered yet , however there is vaccine available for use in horses to treat EEE. The treatment of EEE includes hospitalization, respiratory support and other supportive therapy. The only way to protect yourself is to take preventive measures by keeping the mosquito bites away. You can reduce the risk of being infected with EEE virus by wearing full sleeves and protective clothing, using insect repellent and stay indoor while mosquitoes are being active. Cover the unused container filled with water and remove the garbage from gutters that can clog the water.
Image is taken from mosquito-va.org.
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