Updated: November 12, 2012 11:55AM
An 85-year-old Elgin man was the 10th person reported to have contracted the mosquito-borne West Nile Virus this year in Kane County, the county health department said Wednesday.
The latest victim was hospitalized and has since been discharged, according to health officials.
The health department reports new cases once a week on Wednesdays.
Other Kane County cases this year include three Elgin men ages 61, 64 and 67; a 50-year-old St. Charles man; a 59-year-old man and 61-year-old woman, both from Geneva; two Aurora men ages 70 and 71; and a 16-year Batavia girl.
The 64-year-old Elgin man died in August. His was the only Kane County death from West Nile reported this season, which is now considered over with the recent first hard frost.
“This summer was hot and dry, the perfect combination for the Culex mosquito, the species that is known to carry the virus,” the health department said in a press release.
Kane County reported only one human case of West Nile in 2011 and five cases in 2010. In 2009, an unusually mild summer with cool temperatures, there were no human cases of West Nile Virus reported in Kane County.
West Nile virus is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird. Most people with the virus have no clinical symptoms of illness, but some may become ill three to 14 days after the bite of an infected mosquito. Only about two persons out of 10 who are bitten by an infected mosquito will experience any illness, the department said.
Illness from West Nile is usually mild and includes fever, headache and body aches; but serious illness, such as encephalitis and meningitis, and death are possible. Persons older than 50 have the highest risk of severe disease.
Additional information about West Nile virus can be found on the Kane County Health Department’s website at www.kanehealth.com/west_nile.htm or the Illinois Department of Public Health’s website at www.idph.state.il.us/envhealth/wnv.htm. People also can call the IDPH West Nile Virus Hotline at 866-369-9710 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.