- Associated Press - Monday, August 8, 2016

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Three new West Nile virus cases have been confirmed in Mississippi residents.

The Mississippi State Department of Health, in a news release Monday, said two of the cases were reported in Hinds County while the third was in Lowndes County. The new cases bring the 2016 total to eight. Last year, the state had 38 West Nile virus cases and one death.

Deputy State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers says the state is in peak West Nile virus season and urged residents to protect themselves against mosquito bites.

Symptoms of the infection are often mild and may include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, a rash and muscle weakness. In a small number of cases, infection can result in encephalitis or meningitis, which can lead to paralysis, coma and possibly death.

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