West Nile Virus Cases Reported in Humans, HorsesBy Kentucky Equine Research Staff · August 22, 2012
Cases of serious illness from West Nile virus in humans have been reported earlier than usual this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. Numbers are the highest since 2004 for this disease that usually occurs later in the summer.
The illness has been found in more than 20 states, with Texas reporting the highest numbers. Four human deaths have been attributed to the disease. Health officials believe the mild winter, early spring, and hot summer have led to a larger than usual crop of mosquitoes, the insect that carries the virus to humans and horses.
Several horses have also been diagnosed with West Nile virus. Horses infected with the virus may show depression, stumbling, lack of coordination, weakness, and twitching of muscles and lips.