'Probable' West Nile diagnosis in Ottawa, first since 2006
Ottawa health officials say a human has likely been infected by the West Nile Virus.
The city said Thursday they’re investigating a “probable” human case of the mosquito-borne illness in an elderly patient.
If it’s confirmed, they said it would be the first diagnosis of West Nile Virus in a human in Ottawa since 2006.
Mosquitoes carrying the virus, which can cause a flu-like illness in people with weak immune systems, were found in Ottawa mosquitoes earlier this month.
The city said in a news release they test standing water sites on city property every week and use chemicals to kill mosquito larvae when appropriate.
Data on their website said 245 bodies of water were tested for the week ending Aug. 25, with 28 of them holding mosquitos with West Nile.
Many people infected with West Nile won't experience any symptoms, but the potential exists for more serious health problems such as comas, disorientation and muscle weakness.
Residents can help protect themselves from West Nile Virus by clearing out bodies of standing water, using mosquito repellent and making sure window and door screens are intact.
There have been 82 confirmed cases in Ontario this year, the highest number since 2002.
With a report from CTV Ottawa's Natalie Duddridge