With this summer comes warnings about a rare, and potentially life-threatening tick-borne disease called Powassan. The virus is carried and transmitted by three types of ticks (including the deer tick that transmits Lyme). If you have never checked yourself after a walk during tick season, it’s time to start now because everyone is at risk for Powassan. Infections are most likely during late spring, early summer, and mid-fall when ticks are most active. There are currently no known treatments for Powassan.
Scientists believe that both Powassan and Lyme disease are on the rise.
From the article:
“The unlucky few who develop a more serious illness will do so very quickly over the next couple of days. You start to develop difficulties with maintaining your consciousness and your cognition. … You may develop seizures. You may develop inability to breathe on your own.
Standard treatment includes intravenous fluids, though antiviral medications, systemic corticosteroids, and other drugs have been tried in some patients.”
A bad tick season ahead
First discovered in Ontario, Canada in 1958, it was named after the town where the first known infection, a child who came down with an unspecified encephalitis, lived.