GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — News 8 reporter Barton Deiters was diagnosed on Thursday with West Nile virus and remains hospitalized, his family said.
The state on Thursday reported 10 known human West Nile cases in Michigan this year, including two in Kent County and one in Barry County.
Deiters, 55, was hospitalized nearly two weeks ago and recently moved to the University of Michigan hospital in Ann Arbor, suffering from what had been an unknown infection.
His wife Lorena Deiters said he remains on a ventilator but that his high fever has subsided.
There is no cure or treatment for West Nile, but his wife said doctors are treating his symptoms.
Deiters, a native of the city of Wyoming, joined News 8 in January 2016 after 16 years with the Grand Rapids Press/MLive.
West Nile virus is the leading cause of mosquito-borne disease in the continental United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The CDC says that eight out of 10 people infected with West Nile virus don’t develop any symptoms.
Symptoms in serious cases can include high fever, headaches, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis.
To prevent West Nile, the CDC recommends using insect repellent, wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, treating clothing and gear and taking steps to control mosquitoes indoors and outdoors, such as emptying standing water.
The News 8 family is sending Deiters and his family thoughts and prayers.