Protect Yourself and Others from Eastern Equine Encephalitis and West Nile Virus
To the College Community:
With recent cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV) in local communities, the Springfield College Health Center wants to help you make educated decisions and take precautions when spending time outdoors.
Below is information on the viruses and precautionary recommendations to protect yourself and others from EEE and WNV.
- Avoid being outside from dusk to dawn.
- When outside wear bug spray containing DEET, permethrin, picaridin (KBR 3023), IR3535 (3-[N-butyl-N-acetyl]-aminopropionic acid), or oil of lemon eucalyptus [p-menthane 3, 8-diol (PMD)] and use according to the instructions on the product label.
- Wear long sleeves and pants when spending time outdoors. Cover as much skin as possible to protect from mosquitoes.
- Keep windows without screens or those with broken screens closed.
- Avoid standing water.
Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE)
- The first symptoms of EEE are fever (often 103º to 106ºF), stiff neck, headache, and lack of energy. If you experience these symptoms seek medical attention.
- Symptoms show up three to 10 days after a bite from an infected mosquito.
- The EEE virus particularly infects birds, often with no evidence of illness in the bird. Mosquitoes become infected when they bite infected birds. Although humans and several other types of mammals, particularly horses and llamas, can become infected, they do not spread disease.
West Nile Virus (WNV)
- The majority of people who are infected with WNV (approximately 80 percent) will display no symptoms.
- A smaller number of people who become infected (~ 20 percent) will display symptoms such as fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting, and sometimes swollen lymph glands. They may also develop a skin rash on the chest, stomach, and back.
- Less than 1 percent of people infected with WNV will develop severe illness, including encephalitis or meningitis. The symptoms of severe illness can include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness, and paralysis.
- If you experience any of the above symptoms, seek medical attention.
- WNV is most commonly spread to people through the bite of an infected mosquito.
Information received from Massachusetts Department of Public Health