WEE is caused by the western equine encephalitis virus, which is one of a group of viruses called arboviruses. In the United States, these viruses are usually spread by infected mosquitoes.
A risk factor is something that increases your chance of getting a disease or condition. Some factors thought to increase the risk of WEE include:
Living in or visiting the plains regions of the western and central United States
Participating in outdoor activities
WEE results in a wide range of symptoms and may produce no symptoms at all. The disease can be mild, severe, or even fatal. The disease is fatal in about 3% of people who develop symptoms. Symptoms associated with WEE usually appear 5-10 days after the bite of an infected mosquito and may include:
Because the infection is viral, there is no specific treatment for WEE. Treatment will focus on managing your symptoms and related complications.
There is no vaccine against WEE for humans, although there is a vaccine for horses. Prevention of WEE focuses on controlling mosquitoes and avoiding mosquito bites. Steps you can take to avoid mosquito bites include:
Stay inside between dusk and dark, when mosquitoes are most active.
Wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts when outside.
Spray exposed skin with an insect repellent that contains up to 35% diethyltoluamide (DEET).
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a