Fresno woman hospitalized after being infected with West Nile Virus

Wednesday, July 31, 2019
Fresno woman hospitalized after being infected with West Nile Virus
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A Fresno woman is in the hospital after her family says she was bitten by a mosquito and infected with the West Nile Virus.

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- These days, Thomas Hardwick is spending his waking hours at Clovis Community Medical Center by his wife's side.

"She was healthy, and then overnight, she just went downhill. I mean fast, downhill," he said.

Hardwick says Laura was recently diagnosed with West Nile.

"You never think it's going to happen to you until it does and then when it does it hits you like a tornado. There's nothing you can even say or do. It's just mind-boggling," he said.

No one knows where Laura got infected, but the family says there a few spots in Fresno and Clovis that are being assessed.

RELATED: Mosquitoes near Fresno State test positive for West Nile Virus

On the Fourth of July, they were in Clovis celebrating and Thomas says his wife got a few mosquito bites.

"Around the 7th is when she started getting the symptoms of being tired had malaise, didn't want to do anything, and it just progressed," Hardwick said. "Then on the morning of the 11th we brought her in, and she was out of it. She collapsed twice in the ER coming in."

Laura is too weak to walk, and she can't feed herself.

She is recovering, but there is a long road ahead of her. She will soon be transferred to a rehab facility.

Now Thomas, along with the rest of his family, are warning one bite can change everything.

"Don't let your water stand and spray when you go outside because you shouldn't have to go through this," he said.

The Consolidated Mosquito Abatement District says 120 samples have tested positive for West Nile.

While it does take some time to confirm the virus, they don't wait to go out to try to mitigate the problem.

"If we have the proper conditions. We set up a spray route and we would send our truck with a mounted fogger to apply an ultra-low volume of this insecticide. It creates a mist that would drift through these areas, contact the adult mosquitoes, and kill them," said district manager Steve Mulligan.

The family has started a GoFundMe for Laura's recovery.

SEE ALSO: How to protect yourself from mosquitoes