MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - The Shelby County Health Department has confirmed four more human cases of the West Nile virus, making a total of 10 cases so far this year.
Recent cases include a 71-year-old female, a 53-year-old female, a 46-year-old male and a 56-year-old male. Earlier cases have ranged in ages from 27 to 69 years old.
Dr. Dan Springer with the Shelby County Vector Control says the majority of people infected by the virus never develop any symptoms or know they have it. A mild case of West Nile can cause flu-like symptoms and a skin rash. But a severe case can cause convulsions, vision loss, numbness, paralysis, coma and even death. The symptoms can last several weeks, and neurological effects may be permanent.
People over the age of 50 are more likely to develop serious symptoms.
According to the Center for Disease Control there have been a total of 15 human cases of West Nile in Tennessee this year and no deaths. Among the 31 cases reported in Arkansas three people have died. In Mississippi, four have died from the 113 reported cases.