Home Health and Fitness A rare tick-borne illness is spiking. Here’s what to know about this deadly virus.

A rare tick-borne illness is spiking. Here’s what to know about this deadly virus.

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As we enter the middle of tick season, cases of rare tick-borne diseases that can cause seizures and neurological problems are on the rise.

A 58-year-old man died of Powassan virus in Maine last month, reports say Washington Postthe first death in the United States will occur in 2023.

Poissant is usually rare, but can cause serious illness and in some cases death.that Found in New Jerseythe number of infected people is increasing nationwide.

In 2012, there were only 7 cases in the United States, but in 2019, the number soared to 39. In 2021, 23 cases were reported.

New Jersey has recorded 15 cases since Poissan was first discovered in 2013, including two last year. At least four Garden State residents have died from the virus.

According to the report, powassans typically appear in the Northeast and Great Lakes regions in late spring and become a threat through mid-autumn. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Warming climate is accelerating the increase of ticks and expanding their range.

Three species of ticks are known to carry the disease. Groundhog ticks, squirrel ticks (both of which rarely sting), and the black-footed or deer tick, known to bite humans, are common in New Jersey.

Powassan spreads more easily than Lyme disease, a better-known tick-borne disease that takes 36 to 48 hours from bite to infection. Poissin, on the other hand, takes him only 15 minutes.

Infection with the virus does not necessarily result in symptoms, according to the CDC. For those who qualify, symptoms may appear within a week to a month.

According to the CDC, signs of serious illness include confusion, loss of balance, speech problems and seizures.

About 10% of people who develop critical illness die, and about half of those who survive critical illness have long-term problems such as headaches, muscle weakness and memory problems, the CDC said. are doing.

Here’s a breakdown of the number of cases in New Jersey since 2013:

  • 2013: 1 (1 death)
  • 2014: 1 case
  • 2015: 1 case
  • 2016: 0 cases
  • 2017: 4 cases
  • 2018: 1 case
  • 2019: 4 cases (2 deaths)
  • 2020: 1 infected person (1 death)
  • 2021: 0 cases
  • 2022: 2 cases

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Here’s how to access Spencer Kent: skent@njadvancemedia.com.

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