Oklahoma: Man Dies After Acquiring Heartland Virus

The state of Oklahoma says a man has died after acquiring the Heartland virus, making him the second person in the U.S. to die after coming down with the illness.

Oklahoma officials said Tuesday the Delaware County man died recently from complications of the virus, which is found in the Lone Star tick and is likely spread through tick bites. The virus was first identified in Missouri in 2009.

Just last week WITN reported on the Heartland virus, and how the Lone Star tick is present here and how budget cuts in 2011 eliminated any monitoring of ticks or what pathogens may be present in NC.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said the other patient who died after acquiring the virus had other health conditions.

Other cases have been diagnosed in Missouri and Tennessee, but those patients recovered.

Symptoms of the virus include fever, fatigue, bruising easily and diarrhea. There is no vaccine or drug to prevent or treat the disease.

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