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Toddler Contracts West Nile Virus

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Toddler infected with West Nile virus showed no symptoms. (Published Monday, Sep 3, 2012)

    Toddler Olivia Lalicker is a bundle of energy.

    Running around her Dallas home, she doesn't look like someone who has contracted West Nile virus.

    In mid-August, it was a different story. She had a high fever and was not feeling well.

    “I picked her up and she felt like she was on fire. I took her temperature and she had a 106.1,” explained her father, Steve Hammond.

    Olivia's parents took her to the doctor’s office.

    “She had a couple of mosquito bites on her face, so we thought when we were in there, maybe she has West Nile,” said Hammond.

    The fever was not caused by West Nile -- Olivia was sick with another virus -- by the tests for the much-discussed disease did come back positive.

    Olivia Lalicker had contracted West Nile virus, but she hadn't gotten sick from it.

    “It was kind of shocking to know she had had it, and had gotten through it,” said Hammond.

    “We expected us to have realized she was sick at some point, but she never had any symptoms, and hasn’t been sick since winter,” said her mother, Heather Lalicker.

    Doctors said if you have contracted the virus at some point, you will test positive for the virus. Health care officials said a positive test result for the virus is not something to be alarmed by if you are not displaying any symptoms.

    Although, the family will continue taking precautions, and carrying bug spray, Olivia's mother has a message for parents.

    “Don’t panic," said Heather Lalicker. "It doesn’t seem to be very serious in most people, we didn’t even know she had it.”

    Doctors said patients with underlying health conditions are in the most danger from West Nile virus, as the disease causes more strain on the immune system. Patients older than 50 are more likely to develop serious symptoms if infected.


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