According to an article on CapeCodTimes.com, researchers found deer ticks carrying the Powassan virus at four out of the six sites they surveyed this spring. At one of the sites, more than 10 percent of the ticks were found to be carrying the virus. The researchers said they were surprised by how prevalent the virus was.
The virus has symptoms similar to Lyme disease, including headache, nausea and fever. But once contracted, there is no treatment for the Powassan virus. And, in some cases, it can reportedly be fatal. Researchers say the death rate in recognized cases is 10 percent.
According to the CapeCodTimes.com article, within the past few years, the Powassan virus has sickened at least one resident of Barnstable County and taken the lives of at least two unidentified Massachusetts men.