What is powassan virus?

powassan virus

Powassan virus is a tickborne flavivirus that is related to a few mosquito-borne viruses consisting including the West Nile virus. The virus is called after Powassan, Ontario where it became first located in 1958. powassan virus

Two kinds of Powassan virus had been found in North America and include lineage 1 and lineage 2 Powassan viruses. Physician-recognized Powassan virus disorder could be very uncommon in Minnesota and the United States.

Powassan virus?

People can get Powassan virus ailment via the bite of a tick this is infected with the virus. Not all ticks deliver these viruses and no longer all of us bitten with the aid of a tick get ill. 

A tick wishes to be connected to someone for a certain length of time earlier than it can cause a disorder. This time c language is not acknowledged for Powassan virus disorder, but it is probably shorter than 12-24 hours.

One form of Powassan virus (lineage 2 or “deer tick virus”) is carried by way of the black-legged tick (deer tick), the equal tick that spreads Lyme disorder, anaplasmosis, and babesiosis. 

The black-legged tick can be discovered in lots of wooded regions of Minnesota. Blacklegged ticks live on the ground in regions that are wooded or have lots of brush.

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The ticks look for hosts at or close to floor level and grasp onto a person or animal as they stroll by using. Ticks do not leap, fly, or fall from trees. powassan virus

In Minnesota, the months of April through July and September thru October are the greatest danger of being bitten using a black-legged tick. Risk peaks in June or July every 12 months. Blacklegged ticks are small; 

adults are approximately the size of a sesame seed and nymphs (young ticks) are about the size of a poppy seed. Due to their small size, someone might not understand they had been bitten by way of a tick.

powassan virus

Another kind of Powassan virus (lineage 1) is carried out using a similar tick species that typically feeds on woodchucks and squirrels instead of people. 

These ticks have additionally been observed in wooded areas in Minnesota, but human beings hardly ever come into contact with them.

What are the signs of the Powassan virus?

Many humans infected with the Powassan virus don't have any signs and symptoms or the simplest moderate signs. Symptoms of Powassan virus ailment usually appear within 1-4 weeks of a tick chunk. Signs and symptoms may additionally encompass:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Seizures

Encephalitis (swelling of the brain)

Meningitis (swelling of the membranes surrounding the mind and spinal cord)Patients with the severe disorder may additionally go through long-term neurologic signs and symptoms including complications and reminiscence issues. Death is possible however rare (about 10% of cases with encephalitis).

How is the Powassan virus identified?

If a person suspects Powassan virus disease, they must touch a physician at once for diagnosis and treatment. The prognosis of Powassan virus disease is based on a record of publicity to a tick habitat, a physical examination, and laboratory exams to affirm the prognosis.

How is the Powassan virus dealt with?

There is no precise medication to treat the Powassan virus ailment. Patients with severe illness can also want supportive care consisting of hospitalization and respiration support.

How can I reduce my chance?

There is presently no human vaccine available for Powassan virus disorder. Reducing publicity about ticks is the best defense against tickborne illnesses 

Increasing instances but the low threat

While instances of the Powassan virus are on the upward push, your hazard of getting it is nonetheless low.“Less than 1% of all ticks throughout the kingdom deliver it at this time,” Dr. Vodzak says. 

powassan virus

In contrast, about forty% to 50% of deer ticks in Pennsylvania bring the microorganism that causes Lyme. With that method, you’re more likely to get Lyme sickness.

Though ticks deliver bacteria and viruses that may make you unwell, just due to the fact you were bitten via a tick doesn’t mean you’ll be inflamed. Watch for signs and symptoms in the following days and weeks when you have any, contact your healthcare provider.

And because ticks can lurk everywhere, in any season, and specifically because it receives hotter, it’s a great concept to be conscious of. By working towards some proper conduct whilst you’re out of doors, you may limit your and your own family’s chance of being bitten. And spend more time playing the superb outside.

powassan virus

How Is Powassan Virus Infection Diagnosed?

A healthcare provider might suspect Powassan virus contamination primarily based on a person’s signs and symptoms and tick publicity. 

If so, they’ll take a small pattern of blood or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF, the fluid that surrounds the mind and spinal twine) to ship to a lab for trying out. To get a CSF sample, they’ll do a spinal tap (lumbar puncture).

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