A Town of Huntington residet is the second Suffolk County resident to contract the West Nile virus this year, the county health department said Thursday.
The case involves a resident, older than 55 years of age, who experienced fever, headache, weakness, altered mental status and shortness of breath and was hospitalized earlier this month. The patient is recovering at home.
For privacy reasons, the department provides only limited details about cases.
Suffolk County Commissioner of Health Services James L. Tomarken said the case was confirmed by the State Department of Health.
On Aug.6, the health department reported the first case of West Nile virus with a Town of Babylon resident who was hospitalized but has since recovered.
West Nile virus is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. It can cause serious illness and, in some cases, death. About 20 percent of those who become infected will develop clinically noticeable symptoms of West Nile virus disease.
Mild symptoms include fever, headache and body aches, and occasionally a skin rash and swollen lymph glands. Anyone with such symptoms are advised to visit their health care providers.
Tomarken asks residents to to eliminate stagnant water where mosquitoes breed.
The county offers a bulletin entitled “Mosquitoes and Mosquito-borne Illnesses,” which contains tips on personal protection and repellents.
Dead birds may indicate the presence of West Nile virus. To report dead birds, call the West Nile virus hotline in Suffolk County at 631-787-2200 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.
To report mosquito problems or stagnant pools of water, call the Department of Public Works’ Vector Control Division at 631-852-4270.
For medical questions related to West Nile virus, call 631-853-3055.