Arboviral Diseases

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Arboviral (short for arthropod-borne) diseases are caused by arboviruses that are spread to people by a bite of an infected arthropod, including mosquitoes and ticks. In the United States, mosquitoes can spread West Nile virus (WNV), California serogroup viruses (California encephalitis, La Crosse encephalitis, and Jamestown Canyon), Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV), Western equine encephalitis virus (WEEV), and St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV).

In Wisconsin, we usually see reports of La Crosse encephalitis, West Nile virus, and Powassan virus infections. These infections generally occur during the warm-weather months when mosquitoes and ticks are active. Symptoms of illness are usually mild and nonspecific, and can include headache, fever, fatigue, muscle aches, and swollen lymph nodes. Some people may experience severe neuroinvasive illness, including flaccid paralysis, encephalitis (swelling of the brain) and meningitis.

Mosquito transmitted diseases

Tick transmitted disease

Powassan infection (POW)

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Additional Info Group

Educational Material Available from the Department of Health Services

  • Form/Publication Number DPH-42166
  • Form Name “Use Protection, Avoid Infection” Mosquito-borne Pocket Card

Electronically order forms: Follow the instructions at the top of the page and email the form: Forms/Publications Requisition Form, F-80025A (can be used to order multiple forms/publications) to Questions concerning ordering of forms can be addressed to Cris Caputo, 608-267-9054.


Last Revised: April 17, 2019