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Contempo Updates
Clinician's Corner
July 23/30, 2003

West Nile Virus

Author Affiliations

Contempo Updates Section Editor: Sarah Pressman Lovinger, MD, Fishbein Fellow.

JAMA. 2003;290(4):524-528. doi:10.1001/jama.290.4.524

West Nile virus (WNV) emerged from relative obscurity in 1999 when the first incursion of the virus into North America caused an outbreak of meningoencephalitis leading to 7 deaths in the New York City area.1 By 2002, human and veterinary surveillance documented geographic spread westward to the Pacific Coast. In the same year, WNV caused the largest arboviral meningoencephalitis outbreak ever recorded in North America.2