Sat. Apr 13th, 2024

The first death from Powassan virus infection in the United States

Following the death of the US resident, health officials have warned the public about the fatal viral disease.

According to the Maine Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, a person in the US has died from the uncommon Powassan virus, making it the first death case in the nation this year.

As a result of the death of the inhabitant of Sagadohoc County, health officials have warned the public about the terrible viral disease, which is presently incurable. People can contract the Powassan virus through infected tick bites. Even though it’s still uncommon, more Powassan virus infections have been documented in recent years. From late spring through mid-fall, when ticks are most active, the northeast and Great Lakes regions of the United States see the majority of cases.

Powassan virus sickness has no vaccinations or treatments available. By avoiding ticks, you can lower your risk of contracting the Powassan virus.


A rare but dangerous sickness called Powassan virus disease (POWV) is brought on by the Powassan virus. Through the bite of an infected deer tick, groundhog tick, or squirrel tick, it is transmitted to people. Ticks are obligate blood-feeders that feed on the blood of mammals, birds, and occasionally reptiles and amphibians in order to sustain their life.

Although POWV instances have recently been documented in other regions of the nation, the disease typically affects the northeastern and Great Lakes regions of the United States between late spring and mid-autumn.

Up to 25 people in the US contract the disease each year, and the most recent death in Maine, US, since 2015 is the third fatal case there.


The majority of those who get the virus do not exhibit any symptoms, but from one week to a month after being bitten, some people may have fever, headache, vomiting, and weakness, according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

When the sickness is severe, symptoms including confusion, lack of coordination, and difficulty speaking may occur. These symptoms can have a long-term negative impact on health.


The Powassan virus disease has no specific vaccination or treatment. However, it has been suggested that when people are outside they take certain preventative steps.

Rest, plenty of water, some over-the-counter pain relievers, and hospitalisation for severe instances are some examples of supportive care.


Avoiding tick bites is the most effective strategy to prevent infection. When you are in a region where ticks are widespread, wear long sleeves and trousers. Use a DEET-based insect repellent.

After spending time outdoors, check your body for ticks. If you locate ticks, get rid of them right away. You can grab the tick as closely to the skin as you can using fine-tipped tweezers. Without twisting or squeezing it, pull the tick out straight. Use soap and water to clean the bite site.

By Parvathy Sukumaran

Parvathy Sukumaran is a Content Creator and Editor at JustCare Health. She is an Educator and a Language Lecturer. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Education and an M.A in English Literature. She is passionate about writing, archaeology, music and cooking.

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