Since its introduction in New York City in 1999, the virus has spread throughout the entire North American continent and continues to spread into Central and Latin America. Our report discusses the signs and symptoms, diagnostics, and treatment of West Nile disease. It is important to recognize the disease quickly and initiate appropriate treatment. We present three cases of West Nile encephalitis at White Memorial Medical Center in East Los Angeles that occurred over the span of eight days. All three patients live within four to six miles from the hospital and do not live or work in an environment favorable to mosquitoes including shallow bodies of standing water, abandoned tires, or mud ruts. All the patients were Hispanic. Physicians and other health care providers should consider West Nile infection in the differential diagnosis of causes of aseptic meningitis and encephalitis, obtain appropriate laboratory studies, and promptly report cases to public health authorities. State governments should establish abatement programs that will eliminate sources that allow for mosquito reproduction and harboring. The public needs to be given resources that educate them on what entails the disease caused by the West Nile virus, what the symptoms are, and, most importantly, what they can do to prevent themselves from becoming infected.
Puchalski, A., Liu, A. K., & Williams, B. (2015). Three Cases of West Nile Encephalitis over an Eight-Day Period at a Downtown Los Angeles Community Hospital. Case Reports in Infectious Diseases, 2015, 1–3. https://doi.org/10.1155/2015/262698