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Pittsburgh woman dies from West Nile virus

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- A Pittsburgh woman died after she was hospitalized with West Nile virus.

The woman in her 80s from Pittsburgh's Elliot neighborhood was hospitalized after she experienced fever and weakness, the Allegheny County Health Department said on Monday. She died in late September. 

The health department said it was the first human case of West Nile virus identified in Allegheny County this year.  

The health department has set up extra mosquito traps in the Elliot and West End areas. As part of the health department's West Nile surveillance efforts, more than two dozen city neighborhoods and seven municipalities have been sprayed with a mosquito pesticide called Zenivex E20, which isn't harmful to humans or pets. 

Most people infected with the virus don't feel sick and recover on their own, the health department said. Only one in five people infected develop a fever and other symptoms like a headache, body aches and vomiting, and less than 1% become seriously ill. 

Pennsylvania has reported 10 cases of West Nile virus this year to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last year, Allegheny County saw two human cases of West Nile virus and three cases in 2021. 

The health department said residents who believe they or someone they know has West Nile virus should consult a health care provider for evaluation and diagnosis.

Residents can report mosquito breeding sites online or by calling 412-350-4046.  

More information on West Nile virus can be found on the CDC's website.  

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