First human case of West Nile of 2007 confirmed in Ark.

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - The Arkansas Department of Health and Human Services says the state's first human case of West Nile virus of the year has been confirmed. The case is in Cleveland County.

Last year, Arkansas had 29 human cases with four deaths and, in 2005, the state saw 28 human cases and three deaths.

The department says there have been no confirmed cases yet this year in birds or mosquitoes in the state.

Officials say fewer than one percent of people with West Nile virus become severely ill. Some suffer flu-like symptoms for a day or two. In rare cases, the illness can cause fatal brain swelling.

The department says people should avoid being outdoors at dusk and dawn. People should wear bug repellent and long-sleeved clothing if they are outside. The department says people also should avoid pools of standing water, which can be breeding grounds for mosquitoes.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)