NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The first human case of West Nile virus in the metro area for the 2018 season was confirmed Friday by the New York City Health Department.
The patient, identified as a resident of Manhattan who is over 50 years of age, was hospitalized earlier this month with encephalitis, an inflammation of the brain tissue, and has since been discharged.READ MORE: NYPD: 5 People Hospitalized After Police-Involved Shooting In Upper Manhattan
It is the earliest identification since the city started to track the virus in 1999. The first confirmed human cases of West Nile virus normally occurs between late July and October.
“The findings from our mosquito surveillance and the early West Nile virus case serve as vital reminders that mosquito season is here and that all New Yorkers should take precautions to protect themselves and their families from mosquito bites,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett.READ MORE: COVID Vaccine Mandate Takes Effect For New York State Health Care Workers
While 80 percent of the people infected suffer no symptoms, those who do commonly report headaches, fevers, muscle aches and extreme fatigue.
Adults 50 years or older or people with weakened immune systems are at risk to changes in mental status, muscle weakness and potentially fatal infections to the brain and spinal cord.MORE NEWS: Jury Deliberations To Resume Monday In R. Kelly Trial
In addition to the human case, the Health Department also confirmed it found the first batch of mosquitoes to carry the disease in the city this year.