• Tick-borne Encephalitis – Netherlands

    Tick-Borne Encephalitis – Netherlands (Utrecht)

    The Netherlands has its 1st recorded case of tick-borne encephalitis, or TBE virus, public health institute RIVM said on Thu [21 Jul 2016].

    The patient, who was not identified, is thought to have picked up the tick during a walk in the Heuvelrug area near Utrecht and is now recovering from the virus.

    The TBE virus, which mainly occurs in central, northern and eastern Europe and northern Asia, has been identified in ticks in the region, the RIVM said. TBE affects the central nervous system. Symptoms include long-lasting flu like complaints but patients can also develop meningitis. The institute said last month [Jun 2016] there has been a sharp rise in the number of reported tick bites so far this year.

    Communicated By: Promed-Mail

    Although there were 2 TBE human cases imported into the Netherlands from Austria in 2011, the above case is the 1st locally acquired one. Interestingly, a 1 Jul 2016 report indicated that Dutch health institute RIVM issued a warning over a tick-related virus that popped up in the Netherlands and is new to that country.

    The RIVM discovered the virus in deer that live on Sallandse Heuvelrug. Now there is a human case. Central and Eastern Europe countries are endemic for the European subtype of tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) virus and cases occur yearly there. Although the above report does not indicate which species of ticks were involved in this case or deer, in Central Europe castor bean ticks, _Ixodes ricinus_, are the main vectors that transmit TBE virus to people.


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