Powassan virus is a type of arbovirus that causes a potentially life-threatening illness called Powassan encephalitis. It is primarily transmitted to humans via infected ticks during outdoor activities, particularly in rural areas and areas with high deer populations.

Symptoms of Powassan encephalitis may include fever, headache, vomiting, weakness, confusion, seizures, and even coma in severe cases. Unlike other tick-borne illnesses, Powassan virus can be transmitted by the bite of an infected tick in as little as 15 minutes.

The key to preventing Powassan encephalitis is to prevent tick bites. This includes using bug sprays containing DEET, wearing protective clothing such as long pants and sleeves, checking for ticks regularly, and removing any ticks promptly.

It is also important to seek medical attention if you develop any symptoms of encephalitis after being bitten by a tick. Early diagnosis and treatment can greatly improve outcomes for those infected with Powassan virus.

Overall, it is important to take precautions when spending time in the outdoors to avoid exposure to ticks and other disease-carrying insects. Stay informed about the risks of Powassan encephalitis and take appropriate measures to protect yourself and your loved ones.