Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) is a viral disease characterized by inflammation of the brain and spinal cord. Wild birds are a major reservoir for EEE infection, and mosquitoes that feed on them may transmit the virus to horses, humans, and other animals.

Transmission is primarily through the bites of the Culiseta melanura mosquito, and the illness is most common in the southern United States (but other mosquito species are also capable of transmitting the virus). The amount of virus in the blood of sick horses and humans is too low for them to spread the disease. As a result, sick people do not need to be isolated. Because of the disease’s high fatality rate in horses and people, it is regarded as one of the most deadly mosquito-borne illnesses in the United States.


The eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus is spread through the bite of an infected mosquito, although not everyone who is bit will become sick. The period for signs to manifest is four to ten days following the initial bite.

Mild, nonspecific EEE infection symptoms include:

  • Weakness
  • Joint discomfort.
  • Stiffness in the neck.
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain.
  • Fever.
  • A general sense of uneasiness..

Symptoms might persist between one and two weeks. Tiredness and weakness, on the other hand, might continue for weeks or months.

Severe infection symptoms, known as encephalitis (brain inflammation), usually involve:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Appetite loss
  • High fever
  • Headache
  • Drowsiness
  • Restlessness
  • Confusion
  • Seizures
  • Coma


Recovery from a serious infection might take weeks or months.


Medical professionals diagnose EEE based on lab findings and medical history given by the patient. These tests will reveal if the patient has the virus or antibodies that are protective against it.


EEE doesn’t have a particular course of treatment. Currently, no efficient antiviral medications are available, and antibiotics are useless against viruses. Supportive care treats severe diseases, such as hospitalization, respiratory assistance, IV fluids, and avoiding further infections.

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