Heartland virus death confirmed in Oklahoma

Posted: May 27, 2014 at 2:18 p.m.

The Oklahoma Department of Health has confirmed the state's first case and death of Heartland virus.

The Health Department said a Delaware County resident recently died from complications of the virus.

Heartland virus was first identified in Missouri in 2009. The virus is found in the Lone Star tick and is likely spread through tick bites.

The Oklahoma case is only the 10th person confirmed with the virus and the second person to die from it. Other cases have occurred in Missouri and Tennessee.

Symptoms include fever, fatigue, headaches, muscle aches, loss of appetite, nausea, bruising easily and diarrhea. All of the patients diagnosed with Heartland virus reported spending several hours per day in outside activities or occupations.

There is no vaccine or drug to prevent or treat the disease.