Montgomery County is experiencing more widespread West Nile virus activity this year than in recent seasons, Precinct 3 Commissioner James Noack’s Mosquito Abatement Department announced July 5.
According to the commissioner’s office, the mosquito abatement team has reported that 25 out of 78—about one third—of its operational zones have had at least one mosquito sample that tested positive for West Nile virus.
The mosquito abatement team has reported a total of 38 positive samples collected in Montgomery County as of July 5, 28 of which were in The Woodlands.
Although roughly eight out of every 10 people infected with West Nile virus do not develop any symptoms, about one in five will develop Fabrile Illness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People who develop the illness can experience fevers alongside other symptoms such as headaches, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea or rashes.
In more serious cases, about one in every 150 people who are infected with West Nile virus can develop illnesses that affect the central nervous system, such as encephalitis or meningitis. According to the CDC, these more serious illnesses can lead to permanent damage to the central nervous system or, in some cases, death.
People who are at greater risk of developing serious illness from West Nile virus include individuals who are 60 years or older and those with certain medical conditions such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension or kidney disease, as well as those who have received organ transplants.
According to the commissioner’s office, the Precinct 3 team is taking the necessary measure to ensure that all areas are treated as quickly as possible. Efforts include spraying all streets, county rights of way, storm sewers and ditches.
The commissioner’s office encourages residents to use insect repellent, wear long, light loose clothing and eliminate standing water for the remainder of mosquito season. Mosquito season begins in the summer and continues through the fall.