West Nile cases increasing in Arkansas

West Nile cases increasing in Arkansas

This year, doctors report 10 West Nile cases across Arkansas, which is the highest since 2007. Leaders expect that number to rise.
LITTLE ROCK, AR -- This year, doctors report 10 West Nile cases across Arkansas, which is the highest since 2007. Leaders expect that number to rise.

Five days a week, Little Rock city workers kill unwanted pests.

"We have up to 3 mosquito sprayers available," said Warren Atkins, LR Solid Waste Services Manager.

City managers start spraying for mosquitoes in April and keep trucks going until October.

"We try to start East and spray West and then go back and respray. It usually takes about three weeks to cover the whole city," said Atkins.

Little Rock city managers say if you are worried your neighborhood has more mosquitoes than usual, pick up the phone and dial 3-1-1.

"We'll take call-ins for customers and if they want their particular area sprayed because they think they have a mosquito problem, we'll break off and try to spray those areas as the calls come in," said Atkins.

If you do get a mosquito bite, doctors say don't panic.

"It's going to take 8 to 14 days for any type of symptoms to develop. So if you get a bite today and develop symptoms tomorrow, that's not West Nile virus," said St. Vincent Health System Dr.Kenneth Sauer.

However, if you get seizures, headaches, nausea, or vomiting, doctors say go to your doctor to be tested.

August is usually the most active month for the disease. But doctors encourage prevention, such as wearing insect repellant, dumping standing water, and try not be outside at dawn or dusk, which is when mosquitoes are most active.

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