West Nile disease threatens

British holidaymakers at risk in Spain

Spraying in Spain to halt progress of West Nile disease

Authorities in Spain’s Andalusia region are warning residents about a growing threat posed by an outbreak of the mosquito-borne West Nile virus.

The Daily Mail reports that the killer virus spread by mosquitoes could pose the next health risk for British holidaymakers travelling to Spain, experts say. A remarkable coincidence considering the recent good news on a possible breakthrough for Dengue fever, also spread by mosquitos.

An outbreak of the deadly West Nile virus has already claimed the lives of two people in the southern Spanish city of Seville and put eight in intensive care. A total of twenty-three people have been admitted to hospital so far.

According to the Mail, an expert in infectious diseases warned it could spread to the whole of Spain. Pablo Barreiro told Spanish press: ‘Only about two to five percent of the cases present symptoms. 

There are currently not any vaccinations to prevent or treat the virus. Symptoms include headache, body aches, joint pains, vomiting, diarrhoea, or rash.

About one out of 150 infected people who catch the virus develop a serious, sometimes fatal, illness affecting their central nervous system. Symptoms of the severe form of the illness include high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, headache, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis. 

Source:  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

8 thoughts on “West Nile disease threatens”

  1. Due to holiday in wonderful Madeira end September. Can you tell us if restaurants and shops, Lavada walks and boat trips open. As heard 89% closed. So much differing reporting need to ask someone there on the ground.

    • There is a lot open now, certainly not 89% closed. Levada hikes are open and boat trips as well (some operators may be only performing one trip a day instead of two). Most restaurants in Funchal city centre are open, in the Lido area and Old Town I would day 2/3 open but this is changing every week (for the better).

    • I agree with Luis, Judith. Lots of places open, with just a few restaurants still closed here and there – some, I think, will never reopen. Even a couple of new ones I have noticed. Most local cafes are back up and running. You will be able to find boat trips and tours quite easily. All levadas are open, but obviously quieter than usual, which can be a good thing! No idea where your 89% closed came from – completely the opposite!


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