The city of Lewisville will spray for mosquitoes after a 3rd person has been diagnosed with Zika virus in Denton County, county public health department officials say.
The Denton County Public Health Department did not provide any identifying information about patient other than that the person resides in Lewisville and that the case was contracted during a recent visit to Nicaragua.
"This third case shows on ongoing risk when traveling abroad," said Dr. Matt Richardson, Director of Public Health. "Taking precautions to avoid mosquito bites remains very important. Pregnant women or women planning to become pregnant should consider delaying travel to affected countries with active Zika transmission."
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Still, no known Zika cases have been transmitted locally by mosquitoes, local health officials confirm -- all local cases have been imported with the exception of one case in Dallas County that is believed to have been spread by sexual contact.
"In an abundance of caution, and an attempt to combat Aedes mosquitos, crews from Vector Disease Control International, a private company hired by the City of Lewisville, will conduct mosquito spraying/fogging in the areas closely surrounding the infected resident's house. This spraying/fogging will be conducted using backpack sprayers and, weather permitting, will happen Thursday, July 21, 6-8 p.m."
The case is the first for the city of Lewisville.
Zika virus is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito, a known aggressive daytime biter. Common symptoms of Zika virus include fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting several days to a week, though there can be profound impact to a developing fetus should the mother contract the virus.
There is no medication to treat Zika virus and there is no vaccine; the best prevention is to avoid mosquitoes and sexual contact with infected people. The recommendations for avoiding the Zika virus are the same for avoiding West Nile virus.
- Dress in long sleeves, pants when outside: For extra protection, spray thin clothing with repellent.
- DEET: Make sure this ingredient is in your insect repellent.
- Drain standing water in your yard and neighborhood: Mosquitoes can develop in any water stagnant for more than three days.
It has been recommended in the past that to avoid mosquito bites you should avoid being outdoors during Dusk and Dawn (the 4 Ds). While this is true for mosquitoes that commonly carry the West Nile virus, other types of mosquitoes that are more likely to carry Zika, dengue and chikungunya are active during the day. When outdoors, no matter what time of day, adjust your dress accordingly and wear insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus as your first line of defense against insect bites.