A strain of mosquito virus not seen in Orange County since 1986 resurfaced this month, Orange County Mosquito and Vector Control District officials announced Monday.
The Saint Louis encephalitis virus was found in adult mosquito samples collected in Garden Grove on Aug. 9, according to Jared Dever, the district's director of communications. The samples tested positive for the virus on Aug.17.
The virus is in the same family as West Nile virus, Dever said. The Saint Louis Encephalitis virus has also been found this year in Los Angeles, Riverside, Kern and San Bernardino counties, he added.
The last time anyone was infected with the virus in Orange County was in 1984, Dever said. The virus was found occasionally in the nation until 2000, but the strain appeared to vanish with the rise of West Nile, Dever said.
Symptoms are similar to West Nile -- fever, headache, nausea and fatigue. About 80 percent of those infected do not exhibit any symptoms.
To avoid infection, residents are encouraged to eliminate standing water around the house, secure windows and door screens and wear a repellant containing DEET, Picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus or IR 3535.
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