New virus spread by ticks? - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

New virus spread by ticks?

ST. JOSEPH, MO (KFVS) -

Health officials and conservation agents are working together to track down what could be a new virus spread by ticks.

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) say there is no concern, but they continue the search for new cases of the illness.

The origin of the search comes from two western Missouri farmers that spent two weeks in the hospital in 2009.

The farmers both suffered tick bites, and came down with the unknown virus.

Officials in the Heartland say they are just now learning of the sickness.

The two men fully recovered from the health issue, but it took about three months for the health issues to go away.

Some say finding answers are key, because the virus may not be as rare as you think.

"It could be responsible for more illness than we think," said Dr. Scott Folk, with Heartland Regional in St. Joseph, Mo.

Pat Smith, president of the Lyme Disease Association say the new virus should help bring awareness and seriousness to tick-borne diseases.

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