Officials at the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say a horse in York County had to be euthanized recently after testing positive for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE).
EEE is a virus transmitted to humans and livestock through infected mosquitoes.
Neighboring states Massachusetts and New Hampshire have had several cases of infected humans. The virus can cause neurological damage and, in some cases, death.
Meghan May, Ph.D., associate professor of microbiology and infectious disease at the UNE College of Osteopathic Medicine, told NEWS CENTER Maine that most people who get infected never fully recover.
“This can progress to seizures, comas and even death in about one-third of the people who show symptoms,” she stated.
May says to avoid getting bitten by mosquitoes, you should wear long sleeves and pants when outside at dusk and dawn and use bug spray with DEET.
The threat of EEE won’t fully dissipate in this area until after the second hard frost.