Public health officials have identified 6 additional cases of Heartland virus infection, all in men age 50 years or older.
The phlebovirus was first isolated in 2009 from 2 northwestern Missouri farmers. Public health investigators determined that Heartland virus is carried by Lone Star ticks, which are found primarily in the southeastern and eastern United States.
Ongoing investigations identified the additional 6 cases in 2012 and 2013. Patients’ symptoms included fever, thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, fatigue, anorexia, headache, and nausea. Four patients were hospitalized; 1 with several comorbidities died (Pastula DM et al. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2014;63:270-271).
New Heartland Virus Infections. JAMA. 2014;311(20):2059. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.4876