Irvington man contracts West Nile virus

Posted: Updated:
IRVINGTON -

An Irvington man has become the first person to contract the West Nile Virus this year in Westchester County.

Officials say the 72-year-old man was hospitalized, but is now recovering at home. Symptoms of the virus include fever and chills, and it can lead to serious complications.

VIDEO: Extended interview with doctor about West Nile virus

Officials tell News 12 the area surrounding the resident’s home was treated with larvicide.

St. John’s Riverside Hospital Dr. Paul Sasso knows the symptoms of West Nile on a more personal level, as his father contracted it last summer.

"It kind of presented in a typical way, like fever, chills and stuff like that, and his became one of the more serious cases where he actually developed encephalitis. It went to his brain," he says.

Sasso says serious complications with the virus like this are rare. He's recommending residents take precautions to minimize the mosquito population.

He says to make sure to dump any sort of still water around the house, dump trash can lids and get rid of pots.

It’s also a good idea to apply insect repellents. Doctors recommend adults use sprays with DEET.

Another measure to prevent the virus is to wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts to avoid getting bit.

Three out of 199 batches have tested positive for the mosquito-borne illness this year.

Last year, three people were diagnosed with the virus.

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