What is the Keystone Virus? - MosquitoNix

Communities in Florida and Texas are already aware of the dangers of mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile and Zika. But now, there's a new mosquito borne disease for humans to worry about - the Keystone virus. While this virus has been on the radar for decades, the Keystone virus has only recently been found to be a threat to humans. Fortunately, there are several preventative measures you can take to keep this menace at bay.

What We Know About the Keystone Virus

The Keystone virus was first identified back in 1964 in the Tampa Bay, Florida region. From that point on, the virus has infected countless animals, including white tail deer, squirrels and raccoons living in coastal Florida and Texas. However, as early as 1972, there were signs that mosquitoes could pass the virus to humans. That's the year the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene revealed that one in five people in Tampa Bay tested positive for Keystone antibodies. Even so, no action was taken on further human studies.

That changed in 2016 when a 16-year old boy sought medical attention for symptoms that were thought to be caused by Zika virus. At the time, there was a large-scale Zika virus outbreak, so this assumption was based on experience. Yet, tests came back negative for Zika, which puzzled doctors. After additional testing by medical researchers, the official diagnosis was the Keystone virus. As reported in Clinical Infectious Diseases, a medical journal, his case is the first known mosquito-to-human transmission.

Keystone virus symptoms include mild fever, skin rash and possible encephalitis. The most worrying symptom is encephalitis, which causes brain inflammation. Fortunately, the teen showed no signs of this life-threatening condition. Still, the threat of all three symptoms remain for anyone who gets bitten by a disease-carrying mosquito.

How to Keep This Virus in Check

There's only one way to alleviate the threat of the Keystone virus: Avoid getting bit by infected mosquitoes. This entails doing everything possible to prevent the spread of all mosquito-borne diseases.

Mosquito prevention steps you can take include:

  • Wearing clothing that covers exposed skin
  • Placing mosquito netting around baby carriers and beds
  • Staying indoors as much as possible during heavy mosquito activity
  • Repairing cracks, gaps and holes in doors, windows and walls
  • Removing standing water to prevent breeding

In addition to the above steps, it's important to ensure your property becomes an unfriendly habitat for these flying pests. MosquitoNix® is a leader in helping commercial property owners and homeowners eliminate the threat of harmful disease-spreading mosquitoes. And, while we know this information about the Keystone virus is scary, we're confident in our proven mosquito habitat removal solutions.

Instead of a "one size fits all" approach, MosquitoNix offers a variety of mosquito control solutions that are tailor-made for your needs. Our innovative MosquitoNix Misting System is a robust solution for commercial and home environments. Once set up, the system discreetly applies a botanical-based solution at automatic intervals. If you prefer professional fogging treatments, ask us about fast-acting QuickNix™ foggers. For those who enjoy camping and other outdoor activities, MosquitoNix On-the-Go dispensers are easy to carry and use. To discuss these and other Keystone virus prevention options, contact us today for a free consultation.

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