Local health officials announced Thursday they had discovered mosquitoes infected with West Nile virus in Elgin. It was the second time in the past 30 days infected mosquitoes have been collected in the northern end of Kane County, though no human cases have been verified so far.
Officials first detected the return of the virus to the county in July when a mosquito trap near Algonquin tested positive for West Nile. Earlier this week, two birds in Batavia and one in Aurora also tested positive for the virus. There have been no confirmed human cases anywhere in Illinois so far in 2013.
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Last summer, 13 residents contracted the West Nile virus from positive mosquitoes. Other mosquito batches throughout the county are expected to test positive for the virus within the next few weeks following the Algonquin finding, officials said. A total of 47 Illinois counties have also had positive mosquito batches or birds this season.
Serious illness from West Nile is relatively unlikely. Most people bitten by an infected mosquito will have no symptoms. Those that do will see fever and head and body aches between three and 14 days after the bite. Serious illness and death are possible, particularly for people older than 50. Health officials advised the use of long sleeves and pants when outdoors and/or the use of insect repellent that includes DEET, picaridin or oil of lemon eucalyptus on exposed skin to deter mosquitoes.