By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Mosquito-Borne Illness, Monkeypox In County
Stanislaus County

A Stanislaus County man has contracted St. Louis encephalitis virus from an infected mosquito, the Stanislaus County Health Services Agency reported, while the county on Tuesday also confirmed its first case of Monkeypox.

The incidents mark the first human infection of the mosquito-borne St. Louis encephalitis virus in the county. The man, whose name, age and hometown were not released, has developed neurologic illness from the infection.

Stanislaus County Public Health reported the first case of Monkeypox is in an adult male. The individual is in isolation and has not been hospitalized; additional details are not being released for reasons of medical privacy. The risk to the public remains low, said health officials.


St. Louis Encephalitis Virus

As of July 8, 2022, the local mosquito abatement districts had not detected environmental activity of either SLEV or West Nile Virus in Stanislaus County this year, according to the health department. In the case of both viruses, mosquitoes become infected when they feed on birds that have the virus in their blood.

Most people infected with SLEV do not have symptoms. Those people who do become ill may experience fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, and tiredness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In some cases, as in this current one, people may develop neuroinvasive disease, such as encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord). In rare cases, long-term disability or death can occur.

Certain populations, such as older adults, people with diabetes, and people with weakened immune systems, are more likely to develop serious illness when infected with WNV or SLEV.

It can take between four to 14 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito that a person can start to show symptoms of the virus.

There are no vaccines to prevent or medicines to treat SLEV. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses. Severe illnesses are treated by supportive therapy which may include hospitalization, respiratory support, IV fluids, and prevention of other infections, according to the CDC.

Community members are recommended to take precautions to prevent mosquito bites outdoors.

“During the warmer months when mosquito activity increases, and people spend more time outdoors, it is important to protect ourselves from mosquito bites to prevent mosquito‐borne illnesses,” said Dr. Thea Papasozomenos, Stanislaus County Assistant Public Health Officer.

“Residents are advised to report any standing water, including neglected swimming pools, and dead birds to the mosquito abatement districts,” advised Dr. Wakoli Wekesa, East Side Mosquito Abatement District Manager. “Wearing mosquito repellent, long pants, and long‐sleeved shirt when outdoors in evening hours can reduce the mosquito bites.”



“The United States is currently experiencing a monkeypox outbreak, and there will likely be additional cases in Stanislaus County in the weeks ahead,” said Dr. Julie Vaishampayan, Stanislaus County Public Health Officer. “We ask our community members to learn about the symptoms and ways this infection spreads so they can take actions to protect themselves and others.”

Monkeypox is a virus that spreads person‐to‐person through direct contact with the infectious rash, scabs, or body fluids; respiratory secretions during prolonged, face‐to‐face contact, or during intimate physical contact; and touching items (such as clothing or linens) that previously touched the infectious rash or body fluids.

Symptoms of monkeypox can include a rash that can appear anywhere on the body, flu‐like symptoms, and swollen lymph nodes.

To protect yourself and others, avoid close, skin‐to‐skin contact with people who have a rash that looks like monkeypox; communicate with potential partners about whether you are experiencing symptoms and avoid close physical contact with anyone who has symptoms, particularly open wounds, sores, or rashes. Do not handle or touch the bedding, towels, or clothing of a person with monkeypox.

People typically recover in two to four weeks, and most do not require hospitalization. However, the disease can be serious, particularly for those who are immunocompromised, children, people with a history of eczema, or who are pregnant or breastfeeding. People who have symptoms of monkeypox should contact their healthcare provider. Before the visit, they should notify their healthcare provider that they are concerned about monkeypox and whether they recently had close contact with a person who had a similar rash or a person who has been diagnosed with monkeypox.

If you have been in contact with someone who has monkeypox, check with your healthcare provider for the next steps.


Correspondent Sabra Stafford contributed to this report.