ROCKFORD - Two serious cases have been
confirmed in western
"The risk is actually significant," said the director of the Winnebago County Environmental Health Improvement Center Larry Swacina.
Significant that just one mosquito could make you
very sick. Two middle-aged women in
Their cases account for two of 140 human cases of
"Most of them we probably don't know at the time they're in the emergency department that's what they have," said Emergency Room physician Dr. Jason Hallock. "The blood tests are not particularly useful because they can take 2 to 5 days."
For most of the summer, mosquitoes carrying
"With some rain this fall, and the continuation
of some warm weather, that just allows the
Dr. Hallock says symptoms of the virus can start to show within 48 hours of being bitten.
"If they're having high fevers with any sort of confusion, or severe chills, muscle aches, that sort of thing, they should really seek care," said Dr. Hallock.
People most at risk of getting severely sick are older than 50, and have medical conditions like cancer and diabetes.
The county has 8 traps set up across the area to detect mosquitoes with the virus and warn people of the possible danger.
"We place these traps in foliage areas, high plant life, shaded areas," said Winnebago County Environmental Protection supervisor Todd Marshall.
But until temperatures dip low enough to kill off
"It takes a very low amount of water to breed mosquitoes,"
Health experts say it will take several hard frosts to kill off the remaining mosquitoes and meteorologists say that might not happen for another month.