Report: Experts worry over deadly tick-borne virus

AP Photo/Victoria Arocho, File

(WFLA)—Experts are warning a serious, tick-borne illness may be emerging in the United States, according to TODAY.com.

The site reports the Powassan virus, which is potentially life-threatening, is transmitted by the same deer tick that carries Lyme disease, but is far more rare and more deadly than the bacterium that produces Lyme disease—and it doesn’t have a treatment or a cure.

According to TODAY, the virus can cause inflammation in the brain, which has led to death or permanent disability in 60 percent of cases.

The Center of Disease Control and Prevention has reported 75 instances of this disease. The majority of these cases were reported in New York, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

“The bottom line is that we should be very scared of it because nobody is safe from it,” said Dr. Jennifer Lyons, chief of the division of neurological and inflammatory diseases at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and an assistant professor of neurology at the Harvard Medical School. “And it could be that it is emerging and will explode over the next few years.”

Experts say those bitten by an infected tick could get the virus within a matter of minutes.

STORIES THAT OTHERS ARE CLICKING ON –

>> MORE TOP STORIES

 

WFLA.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s