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*ALERT* Deadly Virus Sweeping the Nation

*ALERT* Deadly Virus Sweeping the Nation

Medical professionals are raising an alarm over a new, potentially deadly virus spreading across the country that will only get worse during the summer, with doctors stressing caution.

The Powassan virus is a tick-borne illness spread by the same ticks that carry Lyme disease, which is famous for being extremely difficult to diagnose. Now, doctors are saying that you must now learn what to look for to avoid the virus.

Most cases of Lyme were reported during the summer months, especially in June, and cases have been rising annually in both human and dog populations, with over 300,000 reported cases of Lyme disease in humans every year.

As reported in KGW Portland:

According to the Georgia Department of Health, no cases of the Powassan virus have been reported in this state yet, but that could change soon, Dr. Taz Bhatia said.

“We haven’t seen Powassan yet, but to be completely honest, we haven’t been testing for Powassan,” she said. “So now that it’s on our radar, if it matches to those symptoms of fever, vomiting, weakness, we’ll be looking for it and testing for it, and seeing what we can do.”

The virus, which is carried by the deer tick spreads when the tick burrows in to the skin.

“Powassan virus might be a more serious, more deadly version of Lyme disease,” Bhatia said. “It can cause meningitis, which is an infection of the brain, it can cause encephalitis, which is a swelling of the brain, and it’s often associated with a fever, or vomiting, weakness.”

So far, Powassan has been reported in the northeastern and Great Lakes regions of the United States. There is no cure.

Doctors ask that if you see a tick on you, to use thin tweezers to remove the whole tick and keep it in a plastic bag in case you develop symptoms.

Due to the mild winter, ticks living on deer and mice will have survived and now both Lyme and Powassan are expected to hit record diagnosis numbers.

There are three ways to protect yourself from ticks, which can’t be sprayed for:

  1. Wear insect repellent, especially ones with the chemical picaridin.
  2. Wear long sleeved shirts and long pants.
  3. Avoid areas that are heavy brush and have long grass, where ticks are most likely to bite you.

Margaret M.

Internet Specialist at Warfare Media.

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