, Volume 21, Issue 4, pp 323-324

Import of West Nile Virus Infection in the Czech Republic

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We report West Nile virus infection of the central nervous system in a 69-year-old man, residing in North Moravia (Czech Republic), who visited the USA from 6 July to 31 August 2002. He developed fever with fatigue at the end of his US stay, and was hospitalized in Ostrava after his return on 3 September with fever (up to 39.5 °C), fatigue, anorexia, moderate laryngotracheitis, dizziness, insomnia, blurred speech, and a marked bradypsychism. EEG demonstrated a slow bifrontal theta–delta activity, and CT of the brain a slight hydrocephalus. A significant increase of antibodies neutralizing West Nile virus was detected between the first (1:16) and second (1:256) blood serum sample. The patient recovered gradually and was released from hospital on 16 September. This is the first recorded human case of West Nile fever (WNF) imported to the Czech Republic. Nine similar cases of WNF import from the USA have already been reported in other European countries – France, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Germany.