Category Archives: Parasites

BLACK BEAR attacks WISCONSIN bird hunter ~ MALARIA infections hit 40-year high in U.S. ~ NEW MEXICO woman dies of HANTAVIRUS ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from MS, & TXx3 ~ RABIES reports from CT, GA, NJ, NY, VT, & VA.

Black bear. Courtesy Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

Black bear. Courtesy Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

Wisconsin 10/30/13 wqow.com: by Jackson Schmidtke – Sometimes when you go hunting you come across animals you’re not looking to hunt. A Barron County grouse hunter’s encounter on Saturday put him and his dog in the hospital. “It was a spot where he would have never seen this bear laying on the ground,” said DNR Conservation Warden Phillip Dorn. Phil Anderson was hunting ruffed grouse at the Loon Lake Wildlife Area when he heard branches cracking. He thought it was a deer but it turned out to be a black bear. “I heard my dog squealing in distress and I kind of figured out what was happening,” Anderson said. Anderson’s dog had encountered a mother bear and her cubs in Barron County.

a.LoonLake.WI“I yelled for the dog and immediately the adult bear came from that direction and charged at me and knocked me on my back,” said Anderson “She batted me a few times and shook me and then she went back to my dog.”  After regaining his feet, Anderson yelled at the bear hoping to scare it. The bear left the dog and charged Anderson again. This time Anderson was prepared and was able to shoot the bear point blank in the face with birdshot, a lightweight ammo that typically would not down a bear. “Birdshot doesn’t really penetrate that well from distances,” said Dorn “but this was very close range. Probably within three feet.” The 275-pound bear died instantly.  Anderson and his dog were able to walk three quarters of a mile to his truck. He then drove home where he and his wife assessed his injuries and drove to Cumberland hospital. From there he was airlifted to Regions Hospital in the Twin Cities to have his wounds cleaned and closed. – For complete article and video see http://www.wqow.com/story/23834852/2013/10/30/hunter-attacked-by-bear-in-barron-county

Malaria:

a.malaria.298ed98National 10/31/13 medpagetoday.com: by Michael Smith – The number of malaria cases in the U.S. hit a 40-year peak in 2011, the CDC reported. The 1,925 cases, including five deaths, represent an increase of 14% from the 1,691 cases in 2010 and the largest number since 1971, when the agency was notified of 3,180 cases. The 2011 toll includes 1,920 cases classified as imported, as well as one laboratory-acquired case, one related to a transfusion, two congenital cases, and one cryptic case, the agency said in a surveillance summary in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Not only were there more cases, but more cases were classified as severe in 2011 than in 2010, 275 versus 183, a difference that was significant at P=0.0018.

a.MalariaMap.9899f8The CDC report suggested that the increased numbers might be a result of growing international travel to malarial regions, combined with inadequate chemoprevention by travelers. “Malaria isn’t something many doctors see frequently in the United States thanks to successful malaria elimination efforts in the 1940s,” according to CDC Director Thomas Frieden, MD. “The increase in malaria cases reminds us that Americans remain vulnerable and must be vigilant against diseases like malaria because our world is so interconnected by travel,” he said in a statement.

Anopheles mosquito. Malaria carrier. CDC

Anopheles mosquito. Malaria carrier. CDC

The U.S. figures also appear to parallel increases in other countries, the agency said, noting that 2011 numbers in the United Kingdom were up 22% from 2008, although down slightly from 2010. The findings are based on data submitted to the National Malaria Surveillance System, the National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System, and the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Center. – For complete article see http://www.medpagetoday.com/InfectiousDisease/GeneralInfectiousDisease/42630

Blogger’s Note: Malaria gets very little attention in this blog because, as the numbers reflect, it is primarily an issue for those who travel to other areas of the world and not one of major concern to those who work, play, hike, camp, hunt and fish in the great American outdoors. This article, however, is extremely interesting. JG

Hantavirus:

Deer mouse.

Deer mouse.

New Mexico 10/31/13 Santa Fe County: Officials have confirmed that a 73-year-old female resident of the county has died of Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, a disease transmitted through the urine, droppings, or saliva of rodents, especially deer mice. – See http://www.abqjournal.com/291992/abqnewsseeker/hantavirus-claims-second-new-mexico-death.html

West Nile Virus (WNV):

MS_71058_121809421211160_5406251_nMississippi 10/30/13 MS Dept of Health: State officials have confirmed that the third WNV-related fatality this year involved a resident of Forrest County previously reported as a human case of the virus. There have now been 43 human cases reported in the state, including the three fatalities. – For details see http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/_static/23,14460,341.html

dallas cty TXTexas 10/30/13 Dallas County: Officials have confirmed the 14th human case of WNV in the 75089 ZIP code area (Rowlett) of the county this year. – See http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health/Dallas-County-Confirms-14th-Case-of-West-Nile-Virus-229943881.html

Ector_County.TXTexas 10/30/13 Ector County: Officials have confirmed two human cases of WNV in Odessa. – See http://www.oaoa.com/people/health/article_f0371c44-4106-11e3-8c42-0019bb30f31a.html

Midland_County.TXTexas 10/29/13 Midland County: Officials have confirmed five human cases of WNV in the City of Midland, and Midland Health & Senior Services is currently investigating two new cases. – See video and article at http://www.permianbasin360.com/news-article/more-west-nile-cases-confirmed/d/news-article/rCdvp8HR9Eyypq7O025x4Q

Rabies:

xchng_rabid_meanieMeanDog45Connecticut 10/30/3 New Haven County: East Shore Health District officials are warning Branford residents to take precautions after a raccoon that attacked two dogs tested positive for rabies. Dogs, cats, and livestock should be vaccinated. – For complete article and other precautions see http://branford.patch.com/groups/around-town/p/health-district-rabid-raccoon-discovered-in-branford

PHIL_2186_loresCDCGeorgia 10/29/13 Madison County: Two wild animals have recently tested positive for rabies: a skunk that was in contact with a dog in the 1000 block of Coley Davis Road in Danielsville, and a raccoon that was in contact with a cat in the 400 block of Forest Lane in Colbert. – See http://www.madisonjournaltoday.com/archives/6511-Two-positive-rabies-cases-reported.html

rasf2New Jersey 10/30/13 Camden County: A skunk that was in contact with a dog in Voorhees Township has tested positive for rabies. – See http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2013/10/30/skunk-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-camden-county-2/

Rabies. Cow dying of rabies.  Copyright ITMNew York 10/30/13 Herkimer County: A cow stabled in the town of Stark has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.uticaod.com/latestnews/x1155601678/Rabid-cow-confirmed-in-Herkimer-County

fox-and-raccoon-nibble2 (2)Vermont 10/29/13 Addison County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a raccoon and a fox found in Bristol tested positive for the virus. The raccoon bit a man, and the fox was dying when it was found. – See http://www.addison-eagle.com/news/2013/oct/29/town-bristol-rabies-alert/

raccoon-loomcomVirginia 10/30/13 Pittsylvania County: A Rabies Alert has been issued by Pittsylvania/Danville Health District officials after a raccoon found in the vicinity of Old Mine Road in the Gretna area tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.godanriver.com/news/pittsylvania_county/article_576c0ca8-4170-11e3-a39d-0019bb30f31a.html

CANADA: Health officials report TRICHINOSIS outbreak in northern QUEBEC ~ CANADA: Alert issued after BOBCAT attacks two DOGS in BRITISH COLUMBIA ~ FOLLOW-UP REPORT: COYOTES that attacked COLORADAN last week not RABID ~ EEE & WNV reports from AR, CA, IN, KY, LA, MS, & NY ~ RABIES reports from GA, IA, NJx2, NC, PA, SCx2, & VA.

Polar bear. Photo by Ansgar Walk. Wikimedia Commons.

Polar bear. Photo by Ansgar Walk. Wikimedia Commons.

Canada:

220-inukjuak-mapQuebec 10/22/13 cbc.ca/news: Health officials are reporting an outbreak of trichinosis in Inukjuak. Since early October, about 15 people have exhibited symptoms of the illness caused by a parasite sometimes found in the raw meat of animals Including walrus and polar bear. No official source of the outbreak has been identified but the health department is investigating. In the meantime they are advising people to fully cook their meat to kill the parasite before consuming it. - http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/trichinosis-outbreak-in-inukjuak-que-1.2187320

Canada:

bobcat3WiscDNRBritish Columbia 10/22/13 District of Squamish: Officials have confirmed that a bobcat attacked two off-leash dogs in separate incidents on October 22nd along a trail near Garibaldi Highlands. Both attacks occurred in the morning at the south end of Jack’s Trail. – See http://www.squamishchief.com/article/20131022/SQUAMISH0101/131029996/-1/squamish/update-caution-urged-after-bobcat-attacks-dogs

Follow-Up Report:

(See Three COYOTES attack COLORADAN walking to work – posted October 17, 2013)

coyote.88f7.Bing.freeuselicColorado 10/23/13 thedenverchannel.com/news: by Deb Stanley – Three coyotes that attacked a man in Niwot last week have tested negative for rabies. Andrew Dickehage said he was walking before sunrise when he heard what he thought was a bunny rustling in a bush, but when he turned his flashlight on a nearby bush, he was attacked. “I shined the flashlight and before I could finish turning and pointing it at the brush, that’s when the initial impact happened,” Dickehage said. “At that point, I felt severe agony throughout my hand and I looked down and it [the coyote] wouldn’t let go.” Dickehage said as he was fighting off the first coyote with his flashlight, the other two attacked. He managed to stay on his feet until the attack stop and the coyotes ran off. – For complete article see http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/local-news/wildlife-officials-coyotes-that-attacked-niwot-man-did-not-have-rabies

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):

Little_River_County.ARArkansas 10/22/13 Little River County: Hospital officials have confirmed that an Ashdown teenager being treated for what is believed to be a rare human case of EEE died on October 22nd. – See article and video at http://www.ksla.com/story/23753290/ar-teen-with-suspected-eastern-equine-encaphalitis-dies

07cd7361057a7994e7e590e1fb0d3868ed6ff5ad-1California 10/21/13 Los Angeles County: Officials have confirmed the county’s 7th WNV-related human fatality. Three fatalities have been confirmed in the past week. All were men – two from South Los Angeles and one from the San Fernando Valley – and all had pre-existing health conditions. – See http://manhattanbeach.patch.com/groups/politics-and-elections/p/7-dead-due-to-west-nile-virus-county-confirms_8e79c5d4

Vigo-County.INIndiana 10/21/13 Vigo County: A human WNV-related fatality in the state reported earlier neglected to mention that it occurred in Vigo County. – See http://wibqfm.com/news/articles/2013/oct/21/indianas-first-west-nile-death-from-vigo-county/

Carlisle_County_KYKentucky 10/21/13 Carlisle County: A horse stabled in the county is the second to test positive for EEE in the state this year. – See http://www.thehorse.com/articles/32742/kentucky-reports-second-equine-eee-case-of-2013

LA-DHHLouisiana 10/18/13 LA Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed the state’s third WNV-related death this year. The report is from Rapides Parish, and is the second death this year from Rapides Parish. In addition, the health department is also confirming three new WNV human cases this week, bringing this year’s total number of cases to 51. This week’s new infections include two cases of neuro-invasive disease in Lafayette Parish and one case of neuro-invasive in Ouachita Parish. – See http://www.dhh.louisiana.gov/index.cfm/newsroom/detail/2899

MS_71058_121809421211160_5406251_nMississippi 10/21/13 MS Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed three new human cases of WNV for 2013. The cases were reported in Forrest, Lamar, and Rankin counties, bringing the state total for 2013 to 43 human cases, including two deaths. – For locations of all other cases and other information see http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/_static/23,14422,341.html

Oswego_County_svgNYNew York 10/21/13 Oswego County: Officials have confirmed a human case of WNV in one of the county’s senior residents.  – See http://www.cnycentral.com/news/story.aspx?id=961428#.UmcKKBAljM1

Rabies:

raccoon - CopyGeorgia 10/17/13 Henry County: A raccoon killed by a dog on Chafin Drive in the Kelleytown area of McDonough has tested positive for rabies. – See http://neighbornewspapers.com/view/full_story/23872771/article-Rabies-warning-issued-for-McDonough?instance=all

road_sign_need_helpIowa 10/19/13 Washington County: Police in the town of Washington are searching for a dog they say bit a person late last week. Officers received a report of the incident just before 9 p.m. Friday and they’re searching for a brown dog that resembles a pit bull. Authorities need to find the dog to ensure its rabies vaccination is current otherwise the person bitten will have to undergo a series of rabies shots. Anyone with information is asked to call police at 319-653-2107. – See http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/49d604c98fd64594b1628d8bbfdbb719/IA–Search-for-Dog

cityOfCarrolltonTXNew Jersey 10/21/13 Atlantic County: A raccoon found in the 100 block of South New Road in Absecon last week has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.nbc40.net/story/23751069/sixth-case-of-rabies-confirmed-in-atlantic-county

New Jersey 10/18/13 Mercer County: A skunk found on Temple Terrace in Lawrence Township has tested positive for rabies. The skunk was in contact with neighborhood pets. – See havahart-skunk_120http://lawrenceville.patch.com/groups/politics-and-elections/p/skunk-in-lawrence-township-tests-positive-for-rabies

North Carolina 10/17/13 Orange County: A skunk found in a Hillsborough resident’s outdoor dog kennel, has tested positive for rabies. Her dogs have been vaccinated. – See http://www.wral.com/skunk-is-11th-case-of-rabies-in-orange-county/13012716/

450px-Treed_RaccoonsPennsylvania 10/22/13 Delaware County: Two raccoons found in Radnor Township have tested positive for rabies in the past two weeks. One was in the 700 block of Bryn Mawr Avenue, and a second less than a mile away in the 600 block of S. Hunt Road. – See http://mainlinemedianews.com/articles/2013/10/22/main_line_suburban_life/news/doc5266ae9416bea044225119.txt

rabies.warningSouth Carolina 10/22/13 Fairfield County: A dog that was in contact with two people in the Winnsboro area has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wltx.com/news/article/253791/2/Dog-Exposes-Two-People-to-Rabies

thumbnailCAMJ7KZ8South Carolina 10/18/13 Oconee County: A skunk that came in contact with a woman in the Westminster area has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.foxcarolina.com/story/23729842/oconee-co-woman-expsed-to-rabies-from-skunk

1433850718_c3e303fca7Virginia 10/18/13 Peninsula Health District: A raccoon killed by a dog in the Colony and Putney roads area of Newport News has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wavy.com/news/local/newport-news/rabid-raccoon-killed-by-dog-in-nn

Scientists alarmed by MOOSE die-off across NORTH AMERICA ~ EEE & WNV reports from FL, IL, IN, KS, MA, OH, & TX ~ RABIES reports from GA, TX, VA, & CANADA: ONTARIO.

Bull moose. Courtesy U.S. National Park Service.

Bull moose. Courtesy U.S. National Park Service.

North America 10/14/13: New York Times reporter Jim Robbins has written a chilling article about a moose die-off that has swept across the continent,  but no one has been able to figure out what is causing it. Most believe climate change is playing a significant role. The winters are growing shorter, and the tick population is increasing exponentially. Kristine Rines, a biologist with the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, says “You can get 100,000 ticks on a moose”. That amounts to a huge loss of blood, not to mention the vexation. In Minnesota, brain worms and liver flukes are wreaking havoc on the moose population, which has dropped from 12,000 to about 3,100 in the past two decades. Heat stress may be a factor, as well as unregulated hunting and the loss of forestation caused by pine bark beetles. Moose don’t run in herds so they’re hard to study. – For the article, photo, and video see http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/15/science/earth/something-is-killing-off-the-moose.html?emc=edit_tnt_20131014&tntemail0=y&_r=0

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):

Jackson_County.FLFlorida 10/16/13 Jackson County: Officials have confirmed that a horse stabled in the county has tested positive for WNV, and a deer has tested positive for EEE. – See http://www.wmbb.com/story/23712846/west-nile-virus-jackson-county

McLean_County.ILIllinois 10/18/13 McLean County: Health officials have confirmed that a male resident in his 40s is the second human case of WNV in the county this year. – See http://www.pantagraph.com/news/local/mclean-co-reports-nd-human-case-of-west-nile-virus/article_bfc3ebb0-380e-11e3-85df-001a4bcf887a.html

IN-DH-B-W-LogoIndiana 10/18/13 IN Dept of Health: State health officials have announced the state’s first WNV-related fatality this year. Twenty human cases of the virus have been reported. – See http://www.in.gov/activecalendar/EventList.aspx?view=EventDetails&eventidn=136661&information_id=189501&type=&syndicate=syndicate

reno.cty.ksKansas 10/18/13 Reno County: Officials have confirmed that a male resident of Hutchinson in his 70s who died October 15th is the second WNV-related fatality in the county this year. The first was a male resident of Turon in his 60s who died October 3rd. – See http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/e0bb99cbac9d40089b3839828c0edc80/KS–West-Nile-Virus

worcester cty MAMassachusetts 10/17/13 Worcester County: Officials have confirmed that a horse stabled in Charlton tested positive for WNV and was euthanized. – See http://www.telegram.com/article/20131017/NEWS/310179876/1116

Lucas-County.OHOhio 10/18/13 Lucas County: Officials have confirmed that a female resident of Toledo, age 57, is the first person in the county to die of WNV this year. A former kindergarten teacher and mother of seven, the victim died October 12th at Hospice of Northwest Ohio. – See http://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2013/10/18/West-Nile-virus-claims-life-of-Toledo-woman.html

dallas cty TXTexas 10/18/13 Dallas County: Health officials have confirmed that a resident of ZIP code 75249 in the City of Dallas is the county’s eleventh human case of WNV this year. – See http://thescoopblog.dallasnews.com/2013/10/dallas-county-announces-11th-human-west-nile-infection.html/?nclick_check=1

Rabies:

R02byDNR_WI.govGeorgia 10/16/13 Henry County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert for a one-mile area surrounding 75 Chafin Drive in McDonough after a raccoon that was killed by a dog in that vicinity tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.cbsatlanta.com/story/23708841/rabbies-alert-issued-in-henry-county

stripedskunk_05_thumbTexas 10/15/13 Hunt County: A skunk found in the 600 block of Erica in Greenville on October 9th has tested positive for rabies. – See http://ketr.org/post/rabid-skunk-found-greenville-0

batnewscientist884909Virginia 10/16/13 Wise County: A bat found at a private home  earlier this month near the Town of Pound has tested positive for rabies. – See http://www.wvva.com/story/23708543/2013/10/16/bat-in-wise-county-is-found-to-have-rabies

Canada:

Big_brown_bat_(Eptesicus_fuscus)_285NPSOntario 10/16/13 Grey-Bruce Health Unit: A big brown bat found in the Tara area has tested positive for rabies. – See http://blackburnnews.com/midwestern-ontario/midwestern-ontario-news/2013/10/16/2nd-rabid-bat-in-grey-bruce/

MALARIA a threat to PENGUIN populations in zoos ~ Scientists report DENGUE FEVER being transmitted in HOUSTON ~ EEE& WNV reports from FL, KS, NH, & TXx2 ~ RABIES reports from MD, MI, & VA.

Humboldt penguin. Photo by Dori. Wikimedia Commons.

Humboldt penguin. Photo by Dori. Wikimedia Commons.

Global 10/06/13 nytimes.com: by Donald G. McNeil Jr. – Zoos all around the world love penguins. They’re cute, they don’t require much space, they never eat zookeepers. And children adore watching them, especially at feeding time. But as carefree as they might look, torpedoing through the water or rocketing into the air like a Poseidon missile, zoo penguins are stalked by an unrelenting killer: malaria. “It’s probably the top cause of mortality for penguins exposed outdoors,” said Dr. Allison N. Wack, a veterinarian at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore, which is building a new exhibit that will double its flock to a hundred birds. If left untreated, the disease would probably kill at least half the birds it infected, though outbreaks vary widely in intensity.

King penguin. Photo by Mark Dickson. Wikimedia Commons.

King penguin. Photo by Mark Dickson. Wikimedia Commons.

The avian version is not a threat to humans because mosquitoes carrying malaria and the parasites are species-specific; mosquitoes that bite birds or reptiles tend not to bite mammals, said Dr. Paul P. Calle, chief veterinarian for the Wildlife Conservation Society, which runs New York City’s zoos. And avian malaria is caused by strains of the Plasmodium parasite that do not infect humans. But for penguins in captivity, the threat is so great that many zoos dose their birds in summer with pills for malaria, said Dr. Richard Feachem, director of global health at the University of California, San Francisco.

Emperor penguin. Photo by Samuel Blanc. Wikimedia Commons.

 

Emperor penguin. Photo by Samuel Blanc. www.sblanc.com

Last year, six Humboldt penguins in the London Zoo died of malaria. London is also where the first case of penguin malaria was diagnosed almost a century ago; it was found in a King penguin in 1926. Since then, there have been many outbreaks of avian malaria, including at zoos in Baltimore, South Korea, Vienna and Washington, D.C. The last major American one was at the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines during the hot, wet summer of 1986. From May to September of that year, 38 of the 46 Magellanic penguins the zoo had just imported from Chile succumbed. – For complete article see http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/08/science/earth/zoos-aim-to-ward-off-a-penguin-killer.html?emc=edit_tnt_20131006&tntemail0=y

Dengue Fever:

dengue_alert548Texas 10/09/13 chron.com: by Todd Ackerman – Dengue fever, a virulent tropical disease thought to be eradicated from the United States in the 1950s, has re-emerged in Houston, according to a new study. Baylor College of Medicine scientists are reporting the mosquito-borne virus has recently been transmitted in Houston, the first evidence the disease so prevalent in the developing world has spread to a major U.S. city in large numbers. In the past decade, it has been identified in Hawaii, south Florida and along the Texas-Mexico border. “Dengue virus can cause incredibly severe disease and death,” said Dr. Kristy Murray, a professor of tropical medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and the study’s principal investigator. “This study shows that Houston may be at risk of an outbreak, that people need to be on the lookout.”

baylorMurray’s team investigated the possibility that dengue might be in Houston because the area has the type of mosquitoes known to carry the virus and a dense population full of frequent travelers south of the border, where the virus is endemic. But the study, published Wednesday in the journal Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases, found that most of the infections were transmitted in Houston. There is no vaccine or treatment for the virus. A pandemic outside the United States – hot spots are in India and Bangladesh, Indonesia, Brazil and Mexico – dengue infects more than 100 million people a year, killing at least 25,000. Identified in nine tropical countries before 1970, it has spread to more than 100 today. – For complete article and precautions see http://www.chron.com/news/health/article/Dengue-virus-identified-in-Houston-4883103.php

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) & West Nile Virus (WNV):

Jackson_County_FLFlorida 10/09/13 Jackson County: Officials have confirmed that a deer found off Firebird Lane, south of Marianna, has tested positive for EEE. A resident notified authorities after his dog was exposed to a deer that was behaving abnormally. – See http://www.wmbb.com/story/23650822/deer-tests-positive-for-eee-in-jackson-county

KansasDeptHealthKansas 10/09/13 KS Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed 12 additional human cases of WNV in the past week bringing the total number of human cases so far this year to 32, including two fatalities. As of Oct. 7, the case count by county in Kansas is: Sedgwick-7, Barton-6, Johnson-3, Sherman-2, Wyandotte-2, Atchison-1, Butler-1, Chautauqua-1, Decatur-1, Ellis-1, Logan-1, Marshall-1, Republic-1, Rice-1, Rush-1, and Saline-1. – See http://www.kdheks.gov/news/web_archives/2013/10092013.htm

nh-medicaidNew Hampshire 10/09/13 NH Dept of Health: Officials today confirmed that a horse stabled in the Belknap County town of Belmont has tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/media/pr/2013/10-oct/10092013horse.htm

tarrant cty TXTexas 10/09/13 Tarrant County: Officials have confirmed a second county resident has died after contracting WNV. The victim was a male from Arlington in his 70s. The other fatality was a male resident of South Fort Worth in his 30s. So far this year five human cases of WNV have been identified in the county, including the two fatalities. – See http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health/Arlington-Man-Dies-After-Contracting-West-Nile-Virus-227078781.html

dallascountysealTexas 10/08/13 Dallas County Dept of Health: Officials have confirmed the ninth human case of WNV in the county so far this year. The resident lives in ZIP code 75149 and is diagnosed with West Nile Neuro-invasive Disease. See http://www.dallascounty.org/department/hhs/press/documents/PressRelease_NinthPositiveHumanCase10082013.pdf

Rabies:

Bing.free.use.license.d88808sjpgMaryland 10/09/13 Anne Arundel County: A raccoon found Monday at the Fort Smallwood Park gate house has tested positive for rabies. The park is in Pasadena and officials are advising anyone who may have had contact with the raccoon to seek immediate medical advice. – See http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/anne-arundel/pasadena/bs-md-ar-rabid-racoon-20131009,0,1700238.story

Bat%20SketchMichigan 10/08/13 Tuscola County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a bat found in the county tested positive for the virus. – See video and article at http://www.wnem.com/story/23642583/bat-tests-positive-for-rabies-in-local-community

1248930287_t4KVf-L-1Virginia 10/08/13 Accomack County: Officials have issued a Rabies Alert after a raccoon found roaming Cropper and Church streets in Chincoteague tested positive for the virus. – See http://www.delmarvanow.com/article/20131008/ESN01/310080073/CHINCOTEAGUE-Officials-concerned-after-third-case-rabies-year-found-island

LEPTOSPIROSIS said to be endemic in parts of OHIO and MICHIGAN ~ CANADA: Domestic PORK-related TRICHINOSIS found on private farm in ONTARIO ~ EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS report from GEORGIA ~ WEST NILE VIRUS reports from CAx3, ID, ILx3, IN, MA, NY, PA, & WY ~ RABIES reports from FL, & NC ~ FOLLOW-UP REPORT: RHODE ISLAND officials rule out RABIES in death of second CALF.

Photo courtesy U.S. Army.

Photo courtesy U.S. Army.

National 07/29/13: Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that affects both animals and humans, and it’s more prevalent this year because of heavier rain. There are about 100 strains that are recognized, but most vets vaccinate for the four most common in the U.S. The bacteria are spread through the urine of infected hosts, which can get into water or soil and can survive there for weeks to months. Many different wild and domestic animals carry the disease. Humans can become infected through contact with the urine or other body fluids, but not saliva, of infected animals, or through contact with water, soil, or food contaminated with the urine of infected animals. The bacteria can enter the body through skin or mucous (eyes, nose, or mouth) membranes, especially if the skin is broken from a cut or scratch. Drinking contaminated water can also lifemoto_blogspot_comcause infection. Person to person transmission is rare. In humans, leptospirosis can cause a wide range of flu-like symptoms and lasts from a few days to 3 or more weeks. Without treatment, recovery may take several months. Leptospirosis is an occupational hazard for many who work outdoors or with animals, and it has been associated with recreational activities in contaminated lakes and rivers. According to a recent article in The Blade of Toledo by Tanya Irwin, the disease is endemic in northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan.– For Tanya Irwin’s article see http://www.toledoblade.com/Medical/2013/07/29/Flulike-bacteria-sickens-people-and-pets-alike.html and for more information about Leptospirosis see http://www.cdc.gov/leptospirosis/index.html

Trichinosis:

Canada:

Trichinosis2Ontario 07/26/13 owensoundsuntimes.com: by Tracey Richardson – A Bruce County child has had the extremely rare distinction of acquiring trichinosis from pork — something that was thought to have been eradicated from the province for decades. Trichinosis is caused by small roundworms of the trichinella species. Infective larvae are transferred by the consumption of raw or undercooked infected meat. The problem was most prevalent in swine until government regulations and inspections clamped down on the industry. The last swine outbreak in Ontario happened in 1977. Until this January, the last human case of trichinosis associated with the consumption of infected domestic pork occurred in 1980. There was an outbreak in Ontario in 1993 among a couple of dozen people who’d eaten smoked wild boar meat. Nowadays, trichinosis is usually confined to meat from wild animals. . . . .

img_7978The Bruce County case happened in January this year at a Mennonite farm, said Grey Bruce medical officer of health Dr. Hazel Lynn. The farm was non-commercial and the pig was slaughtered and consumed on the farm. No part of the animal ever entered the commercial food supply. News of the case was mentioned in passing at the public health board’s monthly meeting Friday. Lynn said the child was diagnosed by an “astute” pediatrician in London, although the child recovered without treatment. Lynn said when the farmer acquired the piglet, it was free of trichinella. “So it happened between being a tiny piglet and growing up to be slaughtered,” she said. “However their animal husbandry on the farm was pretty old style, so anything left over got fed to the pigs. Now if you cook it all, it’s OK. But also there were rats around, which many barns have, whether or not they’re well looked after, and that’s probably where this pig got it.” It’s believed the child consumed infected smoked ham or sausage from the infected pig. Smoking the meat does not heat it to a high enough temperature to kill the larvae. The CFIA recommends cooking all wild game meat, pork and horse meat to an internal temperature of at least 71 degrees C. – For complete article see http://www.owensoundsuntimes.com/2013/07/26/rare-trichinosis-happened-on-bruce-county-farm

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

Clinch County_GAGeorgia 07/29/13 Clinch County: A 70-year-old county resident has tested positive for EEE. This is the first human case of EEE in the state, and the third in the country so far this year. Five to ten human cases are reported nationally each year. – See http://www.walb.com/story/22956635/human-eee-reported-in-clinch-co

West Nile Virus (WNV):

San_Luis_Obispo_County.CACalifornia 07/26/13 San Luis Obispo County: Health officials have confirmed that mosquitoes collected at Pismo State Beach this month have tested positive for WNV. -  See http://www.ksby.com/news/west-nile-virus-detected-in-mosquitoes-found-in-pismo-beach/

LAcountyVectorControl.CACalifornia 07/27/13 Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District: GLACVCD has confirmed more WNV positive test results in 25 mosquito samples and three dead birds collected throughout its jurisdiction. This is the first sign of virus activity this year in Burbank, Elysian Valley, Encino, Granada Hills, North Hills, Santa Clarita and Watts. Please refer to chart for a breakdown of the latest WNV activity. – For article and chart see http://hometownstation.com/santa-clarita-news/west-nile-virus-has-been-found-mosquito-scv-36585

Glenn_County.CACalifornia 07/27/13 Glenn County: An elderly county resident has been identified as the state’s sixth human case of WNV so far this year. Five others were infected across Los Angeles County. – See http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local/Additional-West-Nile-Virus-Case-California-217138161.html

Larimer_County.COColorado 07/27/13 Larimer County: Health officials have confirmed that Larimer County now leads the state in the number of mosquitoes testing positive for WNV, and at least one human case of the virus has been reported in the county. Fort Collins officials are warning residents that the southeast part of the city is showing more prevalence of the mosquitoes that carry the virus. Boulder and Mesa counties are also showing a higher prevalence of the infected mosquitoes. – See http://www.coloradoan.com/article/20130727/NEWS01/307270016/West-Nile-virus-spreads-Larimer-County-where-53-mosquito-groups-tested-positive

Payette-County_IDIdaho 07/27/13 Payette County: Health officials have announced that the county’s first human case of WNV is a male in his 40s who is now hospitalized. – See http://www.idahopress.com/members/west-nile-virus-found-in-horses-humans/article_20aabe40-f66a-11e2-b215-0019bb2963f4.html

ILLINOIS_DPHIllinois 07/29/13 DuPage and Will counties: Health officials have confirmed that mosquitoes trapped at Seager and Springhill parks in Naperville have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.positivelynaperville.com/2013/07/29/area-mosquito-traps-initially-test-positive-for-west-nile-virus/25027

madisoncounty_ILIllinois 07/27/13 Madison County: Health officials have confirmed that mosquitoes trapped in Mitchell, Bethalto, Edwardsville, Glen Carbon and Meadowbrook have tested positive for WNV. – See http://altondailynews.com/news/details.cfm?clientid=17&id=86859#.UfWMJ23DK5d

Kane cty ILIllinois 07/26/13 Kane County: Health officials have confirmed that mosquitoes trapped in Aurora and in Algonquin have tested positive for WNV. – See http://stcharles-il.patch.com/groups/summer/p/west-nile-virus-threat-grows-in-kane-county

IN-DH-B-W-LogoIndiana 07/26/13 Indiana DOH: State health officials have confirmed that mosquitoes trapped in Kosciusko and Starke counties have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.wsbt.com/news/wsbt-west-nile-virus-found-in-n-ind-20130726,0,5321104.story

plymouth cty MAMassachusetts 07/28/13 Plymouth County: Public health officials confirmed Friday  that mosquitoes trapped in Rockland have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/07/27/west-nile-virus-detected-mosquito/VyE0GEAaEcmiQlsn5sBMVP/story.html

Erie_County.NYNew York 07/26/13 Erie County: Mosquitoes collected in Amherst on July 17th and 18th have tested positive for WNV. – See http://www.buffalonews.com/city-region/mosquitoes-infected-with-west-nile-virus-found-in-amherst-20130726

lehigh cty PAPennsylvania 07/26/13 Lehigh County: State officials have reported that mosquitoes trapped in Lower Macungie Township, Allentown, and Bethlehem have tested positive for WNV. – See https://www.google.com/search?q=bethlehem+pa&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

Rabies:

cat-child-300x225Florida 07/26/13 Pasco County: A Rabies Alert has been issued for the northwest portion of the county after a cat tested positive for the virus. – For area boundaries of the alert see http://www.baynews9.com/content/news/baynews9/news/article.html/content/news/articles/bn9/2013/7/26/rabies_alert_issued_.html

fox1cNorth Carolina 07/26/13 Wake County: A fox that came in contact with a resident of the 1000 block of Valleystone Drive in Cary on Thursday has tested positive for rabies. A Rabies Alert has been issued for those living in the vicinity of the High House Road and Davis Drive intersection. – For map of the area see http://abclocal.go.com/wtvd/story?section=news/local&id=9186608

Follow-Up Report:

(See – Officials fear a “large number” of people in TIVERTON, RHODE ISLAND, may have been exposed to RABIES – posted July 27, 2013)

question-markRhode Island 07/27/13 providencejournal.com: by Felice J. Freyer: Laboratory tests have ruled out rabies as the cause of a brown calf’s death on Friday, the second of two calves that died near a Tiverton ice cream shop. But it still isn’t known what killed the brown calf. And the Health Department’s advice remains the same for people who came in contact with the black-and-white calf that died July 21 in the same pasture, next to Gray’s Ice Cream shop. People who came in contact with that calf, known as Oreo, between July 5 and July 21 should call the Health Department at (401) 222-2577 to find out if they should receive rabies shots. Oreo died six days after biting a child, but word of its death did not reach authorities in time to test the calf for rabies. Rabies remains a possibility for Oreo. Oreo was removed from direct public contact on July 16, and only the animal’s handlers may have been exposed from July 16 through July 21. There is no risk of rabies for those who came in contact with the calf before July 5. – For complete article see http://www.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/content/20130727-r.i.-health-department-rules-out-rabies-in-death-of-second-tiverton-calf.ece

CHAGAS DISEASE unknown to most but scientists say very costly to U.S. economy ~ FLORIDA man dies of EASTERN EQUINE ENCEPHALITIS ~ RABIES reports from FL, & NC.

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Global 02/11/13 nytimes.com: by Donald G. McNeil Jr. – Chagas disease may be obscure, but the economic burden it imposes on the world is greater than that of better-known diseases, like cervical cancer or cholera, according to a new study. Even in the United States, the authors said, the costs of Chagas are commensurate with those of more publicized diseases, like Lyme disease. (In the same league, perhaps, but not quite equal. In their study, published in Lancet Infectious Diseases, the authors calculated that Chagas cost the American economy $900 million a year. A 1998 study estimated that Lyme disease cost $2.5 billion.)

Chagas disease is caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi, which is transmitted to animals and people by insect vectors that are found only in the Americas (mainly, in rural areas of Latin America where poverty is widespread). The insect vectors are called triatomine bugs (also called kissing bugs or conenose bugs). Chagas disease is also referred to as American trypanosomiasis.AZ Dept of Health Services.

Chagas disease is caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi, which is transmitted to animals and people by insect vectors that are found only in the Americas (mainly, in rural areas of Latin America where poverty is widespread). The insect vectors are called triatomine bugs (also called kissing bugs or conenose bugs). Chagas disease is also referred to as American trypanosomiasis.AZ Dept of Health Services.

Chagas disease is caused by a trypanosome parasite transmitted by the bloodsucking “kissing bug,” which bites victims as they sleep. Transmission is endemic in much of Latin America, from central Mexico to northern Argentina. Kissing bugs have been found in the southern United States; the bugs tend to live in substandard housing and animal pens. The parasites cause an initial flulike illness that can be cured if it is caught. But it is often not diagnosed, and the infection may become chronic. It may be silent for decades and then emerge as long-term damage to the heart or intestines. It can be fatal. Up to 10 million people may be infected, many of whom have emigrated from Latin America seeking jobs in the United States, Canada and Europe — especially Spain.

Triatomine bugs are typically found in the southern United States, Mexico, Central America, and South America (as far south as southern Argentina). The map above details triatomine occurrence by U.S. state. CDC 2012.

Triatomine bugs are typically found in the southern United States, Mexico, Central America, and South America (as far south as southern Argentina). The map above details triatomine occurrence by U.S. state. CDC 2012.

The authors, from the University of Pittsburgh and Baylor University, estimated the economic burden by trying to calculate the cost of hospitalization and care, including pacemaker implants, for those with heart damage or other organ failure. The costs vary by country, of course, with the United States being the most expensive. The researchers then added estimates of “disability-adjusted life years,” a measure of Baylor-logo-O-300x245how many years of healthy life are lost. They “cost” more when they are subtracted from the life of a working-age adult in a high-wage country than from pitt_logoa retiree or an infant in a poor country. The authors estimate that the global burden of Chagas is about $7 billion a year. By comparison, the burden of cervical cancer — a notorious killer of women, but almost only in poor countries, and usually as they age out of their working lives — is estimated at below $5 billion.

Dr. Peter J. Hotez

Dr. Peter J. Hotez

The burden of rotavirus, a diarrheal disease that kills many babies but rarely endangers anyone over age 5, is estimated at $2 billion. (By contrast, lung cancer’s burden is estimated at $83 billion a year, and breast cancer’s at $35 billion.) Many millions have been spent developing a rotavirus vaccine and on ways to fight cervical cancer in poor countries. Knowing that Chagas is a serious economic threat could push policy makers to spend more money on developing vaccines against it, said Dr. Peter J. Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and a co-author of the new study. Dr. Hotez is also president of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, which is doing research on Chagas vaccines. – For links to health guide and other relative topics see http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/12/health/chagas-disease-costs-us-more-than-better-known-illnesses.html?emc=tnt&tntemail0=y&_r=0

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE):

imagesCA5TB1FLFlorida 02/07/13 Levy County: Health officials have confirmed that a 90-year-old male residing near Bronson died late last month of EEE. This is the first human case of EEE ever reported in the county, they said. – See http://www.chieflandcitizen.com/content/levy-man-dies-eastern-equine-encephalitis

Rabies:

batsyumagrandeFlorida 02/13/13 Duval County: Health officials have issued a Rabies Alert for the Ortega area of Jacksonville because of a rabid bat. – See http://jacksonville.com/news/metro/2013-02-13/story/rabid-bat-leads-rabies-alert-ortega-area

Oz the four month old Snow Monkey makes an appearance at Central Park Zero, Manhattan, New York, USANorth Carolina 02/12/13 Alamance County: Two raccoons recently involved in separate alterations with two different dogs have tested positive for rabies. On Friday, a raccoon and dog fought on Troendly Street in the northwest part of the county, and a different raccoon attacked another dog Monday on Bethel Methodist Church Road. Both dogs had to be euthanized. – See http://www.thetimesnews.com/news/top-news/county-confirms-second-third-rabies-cases-of-2013-1.94331

Was the U.S. blood industry’s supply of raw plasma flowing in from Latin American and Caribbean countries in the 1970s contaminated with Hepatitis C?

BookCoverImage-2

LAMB’S BLOOD is a novel based on a human blood collecting operation in Nicaragua that was exporting its product in huge quantities to U.S. blood industry facilities in the 1970s.

Hepatitis C (HCV) is a contagious liver disease caused by a virus. Those who contract the disease are at risk of developing liver cirrhosis and/or liver cancer. There was no screening test for HCV prior to the 1990s, and it was known the disease was heavily endemic throughout Latin America and the Caribbean region. Nevertheless, the U.S. blood industry was importing raw human blood products from a great many of the Latin American and Caribbean nations in the 1970s and 1980s. Other human blood transmitted diseases include Hepatitis A and B, HIV/AIDS, Chagas, Malaria, West Nile Virus, and others.

LAMB’S BLOOD is now available through Amazon.com, the Kindle Store, and through local independent bookstores.

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