Mosquitos in Pooler (Chatham County) Have Tested Positive for West Nile Virus

 July 11, 2018

There have been mosquitos in the Pooler, GA area that have tested positive for the West Nile Virus. At this time, there are no confirmed cases that anyone humans in the Pooler, Savannah, or Coastal, GA area have contracted the disease. It’s important to take precautions to prevent contracting this virus. With the virus being present in Pooler, it’s important to use caution in all areas of Coastal Georgia, including Savannah.

West Nile Virus Prevention

Basic Prevention from Mosquito Bites and West Nile Virus:

  1. Stay indoors or take extra precautions at dusk and dawn. Mosquitoes are most active during these times.
  2. Remove standing water around your home and business and keep your yard mowed.
  3. Wear loose fitting clothing including long sleeves, long pants, and closed-toed shoes.
  4. Keep doors and windows closed. Repair torn screens.
  5. Wear insect repellent, particularly one that contains DEET on exposed areas.

At this time, there is no immunization to prevent infection with West Nile Virus. Chatham County is currently spraying for mosquitos. There are also a number of natural mosquito control options that won’t cause harm to the community and animals like insecticides may. Options include certain plants and even wildlife. The important thing is to protect you and your loved ones from mosquito bites and potentially serious illnesses.

 

What is West Nile Virus and How is It Contracted?

The West Nile Virus is a virus that is most commonly spread to people through mosquito bites.  The mosquito is infected with the virus when is feeds on infected birds. It was first identified in the United States in 1999, and has spread from east to west coast. After periods of heavy rain and standing water, mosquitos tend to bread and hatch at an alarming rate.

Some birds may be carriers of West Nile Virus. Most notably Jays and Crows are more susceptible to the effect of the West Nile Virus and may die. Dead Jays or Crows may be a sign of the virus in the area.  There is currently no evidence that humans can contract the disease from dead birds or bird bites, but birds are known to carry a variety of diseases so they should never be handled with bare hands.

What are the Symptoms of West Nile Virus?

Eighty percent of individuals infected with the virus may have no symptoms at all. Rarely, more serious symptoms may occur, so prevention is critical. For those who do get symptoms, one in five may experience symptoms such as headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhea, or rash.  Some may experience fatigue that can last for months.  Less than 1% of those infected will experience severe symptoms such as encephalitis, inflammation of the brain and surrounding tissues. Symptoms can show up within a few days to a couple of weeks.

Can West Nile Virus Affect Animals?

When I lived in Idaho many years ago, West Nile Virus arrived and most of the disease seemed to be adversely affecting the horse population.  It can cause a fatal encephalitis.  Early signs of horse infection include the horse not walking, spasms and weakness in its hind legs, recumbency, seizures and eventually coma and death.  If you have animals you fear may have been infected, please contact Savannah Animal Care.  They are the only 24 hour veterinarian care in the Greater Savannah area. (912)335-1200. https://www.savannahanimalcare.com

What about Zika and Chikungunya?

There are a host of potential diseases that may be spread through mosquito bites including Zika, Chikungunya and a few other less common infections. It’s important to seek medical care if you are concerned about any unusual symptoms, especially after being outdoors and possibly being bit by a mosquito.

When to Seek Medical Care

Presence of West Nile Virus can be determined through a physical exam and laboratory tests. While most symptoms are mild, severe neurologic illness is possible. While treatment for West Nile Virus is mostly symptomatic, managing the symptoms is important. Like other viruses, antibiotics will not help in anyway.

About Urgent Care 24/7

Urgent Care 24/7 is always available to test for and treat mosquito borne diseases like West Nile Virus and other illnesses and injuries., Urgent Care 24/7 has 6 locations in Savannah, Pooler, and Atlanta, GA. Urgent Care 24/7 Centennial Park in Downtown Atlanta, GA is the newest 24/7 Urgent Care!  Urgent Care 24/7 also owns and operates Bulldog Urgent Care in Athens, GA which serves the Athens and UGA communities. All locations are open 365 days a year, even on holidays!

Urgent Care 24/7 is committed to keeping you and your family healthy and functioning your best. There’s no need to wait to feel better. You and your family can walk in and be seen immediately with no waiting every day of the year. You’ll feel like family, have your questions answered, and be involved in deciding how aggressively you’d like to treat your illness.

Urgent Care 24/7 also offers Employment, Sports, and D.O.T. physicals. Occupational Health and Employer related services and D.O.T. and non-D.O.T. drug screens are always available at any clinic on a walk-in basis every day of the year. Need lab work? Full service lab testing is available with in-house and send-out labs. No referral or provider visit is needed for basic lab work. Most prescribed medications can be obtained without a trip to the pharmacy, since Urgent Care 24/7 also maintains an in-house dispensary. Patients always have the option for their prescription to be called into their preferred pharmacy.

You and your family can skip the long wait, exposure to serious illnesses, and big bill of the Emergency Room. X-ray and Ultrasound are even available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at Urgent Care 24/7 Midtown and no referral is needed.  Urgent Care 24/7 strives to get you feeling better fast with no waiting. All Office Visits are just $99.  You can trust your family’s health to the staff of an award winning urgent care. Consistently rated #1, Urgent Care 24/7 has been voted Best Urgent Care seven times in people’s choice awards.

For more information about services, locations, or hours of operation:

In Savannah, GA: Call (912)234-CARE anytime, day or night, or visit https://www.UrgentCare247.com

In Pooler, GA: Call (912) 748-9992 or visit https://www.pooleremergencycare.com   (located in front of Sam’s Club next to Byrd Cookie Co.)

In Atlanta, GA: Call (404)721-0444 or visit https://www.UrgentCare247Atlanta.com    (across from World of Coke)

In Athens, GA: Call (706)715-4696 or visit https://www.BulldogUrgentCare.com  (across from Brumby Hall on Baxter St.)