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Powassan Virus in the USA (New York State)

24 Jul 2017

Media reports a second confirmed and third probable case of Powassan virus disease have been identfied in Saratoga County, New York State. A previous case died on 8 June 2017 and the New York State Department of Health continues to carry out investigations.

Advice to travellers

Powassan virus is a tick-borne infection that causes encephalitis and meningitis. Symptoms can include fever, headache, vomiting, weakness, confusion, loss of coordination, speech difficulties, and seizures. There is no specific treatment and the infection can be fatal. However, some infected people do not become unwell.

There is no vaccine and visitors to rural North America should avoid tick bites.

For further information see Ticks.