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Heartland Virus

Heartland virus belongs to a family of viruses called Phleboviruses, which are found all over the world.  It is not yet fully known how people become infected with Heartland virus. However, recent studies suggest that ticks, namely the Lone Star tick (Amblyomma americanum), may spread the Heartland virus. How people are infected is still under investigation.

People who work or do activities outside may be more likely to be infected because they are more exposed to ticks or other biting insects.

Heartland Virus is not a reportable disease in Oklahoma.

There is no vaccine or drug to prevent or treat the disease. Preventing bites from ticks and mosquitoes are most important to prevent this and other diseases that can be transmitted by these insects.

  • Use insect repellents, following package instructions 
  • Wear long sleeves and pants when outdoors so that ticks are easily seen and removed 
  • Avoid bushy and wooded areas where ticks can be transferred onto you 
  • Perform thorough tick checks soon and daily after spending time outdoors

Consult your healthcare provider for proper diagnosis if you have any symptoms that concern you. There is no specific treatment for Heartland virus disease. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses. Supportive therapy can treat some symptoms. Some patients may need to be hospitalized for intravenous fluids, and treatment for pain or fever.