Lake Worth woman tests positive for Zika, says Zika virus is in Palm Beach County

Posted at 11:56 PM, Aug 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-25 04:23:25-04

A local woman has sound the alarm that Zika is in Palm Beach County and she's proof.

The woman, who does not want to be identified, believes she was infected around her home in Lake Worth even though the health department says active transmissions of the Zika virus are only happening in Miami-Dade County.

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For the last 24 hours the woman who says she is the second non-travel related case of Zika in Palm Beach County,  says she has been answering questions from the State Health Department.
"They want to know where, they want to know when, they're trying to track down a timeline," she said.

They are trying to figure out where the 24-year-old may have been bitten by a Zika-infected mosquito in Palm Beach County.

"A lot of people were telling it wasn't a possibility, but it clearly was a possibility," she added.

She says before she started showing symptoms she noticed two mosquito bites on her arm, but living in South Florida she didn't think anything of it.

"I don't spend a lot of time outdoors, so it could have literally been walking to my car," said the woman.

Then, the fever set in followed by a rash and joint pain. She kept a log of all the Zika-related symptoms. Her doctor contacted the health department which directed her to get tested for the virus at JFK Medical Center. The next day her symptoms were worse.

"I could no longer walk, I was crawling, army crawling. I couldn't bend my hands, I could bend my feet at the ankles. I could only wiggle my toes," she added.

She says the emphasis on locally-acquired Zika cases happening only in Miami-Dade County caused doctors to doubt she could have the virus.

"They were kind of like no, this isn't Zika, this isn't how it presents," she said as she described what doctors told her at the hospital she was admitted to. "So it made me feel like something more severe was happening and it was very nerve wracking," she said.

On Tuesday, she found out she has the Zika virus. She says she is doing better but still feels weak and dizzy at times. What scares her even more than what she's been through is what she doesn't know about the virus.

"There's not a lot of information right now, whose to say that if I were to get pregnant in two, five, seven years, that this couldn't affect me?" she added.

Today the woman says one of her neighbors was being tested for Zika. Her 5-year-old daughter is also being tested. She says the health department advised her to wear long sleeves and limit her exposure outdoors.