A Maine man has died after contracting a rare tick-borne virus, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
According to the agency, the case was the first case of the virus in the state this year, and the third recorded fatality from the virus in the state since 2015.
The man died in the hospital after developing severe neurological symptoms linked to the virus, the Maine CDC confirmed on May 17 and Newsweek reported.
The virus, called the Powassan virus, is transmitted primarily by deer ticks and can infect the brain and the spinal cord. Symptoms may include fever, headache, vomiting, weakness, confusion, seizures and memory loss.
People can develop symptoms anywhere between a week and a month after contracting the virus. However, the CDC warns that not everyone who contracts the disease will develop symptoms.
Cases of Powassan virus disease are rare, with only 202 cases reported in the US between 2012 and 2022. Twenty-four of those cases have resulted in deaths.
CDC figures show that the majority of the cases have been reported in the Northeast and Great Lakes areas.
According to the CDC, there are no medications to prevent or treat a Powassan virus infection.
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