HOUSTON (CBS Houston)Texas state health officials are urging people to take precautions to reduce the risk of contracting West Nile virus, after the state confirmed its first case of the illness for the season.

In a report released Friday, The Texas Department of State Health Services stated that the first case of  the West Nile illness of the season was confirmed in an adult male from Anderson County.

Reports indicate that the man is recovering from the neuroinvasive form of the disease. There were no other details released about the man.

Last year, Texas reported 1,868 human cases of West Nile illness as well as 89 deaths From the disease.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,”… “last year ranked as the second worst outbreak of neuroinvasive, non–neuroinvasive, and total West Nile virus (WNV) disease cases reported since WNV was first detected in the United States in 1999. The largest number of WNV cases was reported during 2003.”

The CDC also recommends removing standing water that is left outside, repairing screens on doors, and wearing repellent with the ingredient “DEET” in it.

“West Nile virus (WNV) is a potentially serious illness,experts believe WNV is established as a seasonal epidemic in North America that flares up in the summer and continues into the fall,” as stated on the CDC website.

The CDC also outlines some of the more severe symptoms of West Nile individuals may experience: “About one in 150 people infected with WNV will develop severe illness. The severe symptoms can include high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. These symptoms may last several weeks, and neurological effects may be permanent,” as stated by the CDC.


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