Death Toll from West Nile Virus in Greece Rises to 31



The number of dead affected by the West Nile virus (WNV) outbreak in Greece went up to 31, with a total of 271 cases recorded, the Hellenic Center for Disease Control & Prevention (KEELPNO) announced on Saturday.

According to KEELPNO, during the week of September 20 – 26 as many as 37 people went to the hospital ill from the West Nile virus, while four people died of it.

The first time the West Nile virus was detected in Greece was in 2010, claiming 80 lives in the 2010-2014 period. In 2015-2016, no WNV cases were reported, while in 2017 another outbreak of the virus resulted in the deaths of five people. Apart from Greece, the WNV cases have also been recorded in eight European countries.

The virus is transmitted by mosquito bites and its symptoms are fever, headache, lethargy, muscle pain and nausea. The WNV might seriously affect the central nervous system and result in such diseases as encephalitis, meningitis, and paralysis. The vast majority of the fatalities are people over 70 or younger with a weak immune system.