SANTA FE (KRQE) - It's peaks season for West Nile virus in New Mexico with six more cases of the mosquito-carried disease confirmed in the last week.
That brings the total number of confirmed cases to 14, the New Mexico Department of Health reported. There have been no fatalities linked to the disease.
West Nile cases peak during August and September as summer rains and ponding water increase the mosquito population.
The new cases include two men and a boy from Doña Ana County, one man each from Lea and Sandoval counties and a woman from Bernalillo County. Three of the six have just the virus while the other three have developed meningitis or encephalitis as a complication.
The boy is 9, and the adults' ages range from 56 to 79.
Common symptoms DOH says are worth a trip to a health care provider include:
- muscle aches
In rare cases the diseases advances into meningitis, an inflammation of membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord, or encephalitis, and inflammation of the brain.
Preventative measures include using insect repellents, wearing protective clothing like socks and loose-fitting long-sleeve shirts and long pants, eliminating standing water where mosquitoes can breed and keeping doors and windows closed unless they are screened.
The disease was first reported in New Mexico in 2003, and historically the number of cases peaks in August and September.
Addition information is available on the DOH West Nile Health Data website.
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