Nile virus: case identified in Upper Corsa

“A West Nile virus case has been identified in Upper Corsica,” the Regional Health Agency of Upper Corsica (ARS) said in a press release Thursday. The virus, also called “West Nile virus”, has spread this summer in several French departments, notably in the Gironde and Alpes-Maritimes, with about fifteen cases identified.

A man infected in Upper Corsa had “suggestive symptoms” and was “treated at the Bastia hospital centre,” ARS points out. “The diagnosis of West Nile was confirmed by the National Referral Center on August 29, 2023. The patient returned home, his condition does not cause concern. »

This virus causes infection in about 20% of cases, with a “flu-like syndrome (fever, pain, headache) sometimes accompanied by a rash,” ARS explains. “In less than 1% of cases, it can cause neurological complications, especially in immunocompromised people. »

“As a rule, the patient recovers spontaneously, sometimes with consequences. But a viral infection can be fatal, mainly for the elderly, ”the Pasteur Institute emphasizes.

“This virus is not transmitted from person to person and from person to mosquito”

West Nile is transmitted from birds to Culex mosquitoes, which can then infect humans as well as horses by biting them. “Please note that this virus is not transmitted from person to person or from person to mosquito.” reminiscent of Haute Corse prefecture.

To avoid infection, bites must be avoided by wearing covering clothing, “especially in the evening”, using repellents and mosquito nets. It is important to see a doctor if symptoms appear.

This virus circulates regularly in France. “The first cases of the disease in humans and horses were diagnosed in the early 1960s,” the Pasteur Institute explains, and “the virus reappeared in horses in the Camargue in 2000.” Since then, cases have been recorded almost annually, with bursts observed in some years.

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