West Nile Virus Neuroinvasive Shift

The Beginning Again

I started this site out of a need to have a common, safe and simple accessible place for all West Nile Virus (WNV) survivors to find answers and support.   As you may have read on this site, I was infected with West Nile Virus neuroinvasive in 2007, so I was looking for such a place.  Several other communities were a big help in my recovery, then I saw them disappear as the leader wanted to move forward with their life.  We were left to find a new place for support.  Most people use facebook for communication today and there are still people out there not on facebook by choice or convenience.  So I started Alive With West Nile as a common place to support each other.

Along the journey to learn how to build a website on a budget I created a document with a video “The 6 Dirty Little Lies Doctors Tell You About West Nile Virus”.  Leaders in the internet industry guided and helped me create the book.  Within the book it answered common questions we all have starting out with West Nile Virus nueroinvasive.  A few people disliked the title and or the information, and most recently people were very put off by the title.  Is that not the point of a title?  It is to capture the attention for people to read the information.  I am in the process of rewriting the book.  Let’s face it, many of us have had doctors that do not understand and or do not want to help us unless it is for a prescription drug.  This is not an opinion of myself, it is fact from many people I talk to with WNV.

As I have grown on this WNV journey I still want to help us, as a group, have better care and I am taking a different focus.  It is really not that different.  It has been the basis of this site from the beginning.  That is how much nutrition can make a difference in our health.   I have dedicated blog post to diet changes, nutrition, and overall wellness.   I have a background in wellness, nutrition and health.

Jennifer Holmes, BS, CVT, CCRP, FP-MT

Did you like or dislike the book title?  Leave your comment below for us to read and share.

Alive With West Nile Virus Forum

Hello West Nile Virus Survivors!

We are alive!

There is now a Forum on this site to assist you in connecting with others outside of facebook.  We are trying a forum out and will go through some growth with time so please be patient.  We value your input so if there is something you require from the forum let us know and we will work on it.

You must register to enter the forum as this creates profiles to allow a safe environment.  When you are ready to join us go register or log in at the picture Join AWWN Survivors on the right side bar or Forum tab.

A few guidelines:

Be compassionate with each other, as we all are going through the same illness challenges.

Be supportive in a neutral environment to all needs.

We will moderate and if content is not supportive we will pull it.

If you see something that is not supportive let us know to help the community.

The rest we will make up as we go.


Tell us how you Won Today!



Update 2015:    The forum was taken down as it was not being used because it was not a user friendly platform.  If you have any suggestions please share them in the comment section.


You Have West Nile Virus… Now what?

I was talking with a friend the other day about their son having west nile virus last summer.  He was sick for a month and then fine.  As I told her my story and that it is a chronic illness she had more questions.

If I have no signs is it gone?  We do not know.  From my experience and stories of others symptoms can come and go with stress or other illnesses.

Can I become infected again?  We do not know.  I believe I was infected a 2nd time because I had the same reaction on my arm as the first time.   I did not see any new symptoms.   There are a few others that also report being infected a 2nd time with new symptoms.

I felt great for months or year and now fell horrible, is it back?  There seems to be a wax and wan to wnv.  Stress aggravates it.  Keeping a journal will help with looking for signs of early relapses or triggers that you can avoid in the future.

Is it chronic?  The CDC said in 2009 that West Nile Virus was a chronic disease.

Will I always be sick?  In my experience having a strong body and immune system helps keep the virus at bay or rather the symptoms.  As long as I eat the foods that nourish my cells and support my immune system my symptoms stay away.

These are only a few question that came up in conversation.  If you have a question to add leave it in the comment below and we will get back to you.

Wish all well


Social Challenges with Chronic Illness and WNV

Social Challenges

With a chronic illness the body goes through changes that takes you out of society due to dizzy, light sensitive, paralyzed or blind to name a few.   How do you reintegrate once your health is back to normal?  Is it as easy as going to a party or park?

It starts with baby steps.  First going to a friends house for a brief meeting.  Second going to a group event that you feel safe in.  Third finding a group meeting that test your social stability.  Here you may course correct to be stronger at the next event.

You must learn to listen to your body and when it says leave to go rest that you listen to it.  The first group gathering I went to my body went into an anxiety attack after 15 minuets of stimulation.  The nervous system was over taxed.  The longer I stayed the higher the probability of having a relapse of WNV occurred.   This in turn made the event not so fun and not wanting to participate in an event again.

When I set a timer on my phone for 15 minuets to leave, listened to my body and left the event it was a pleasurable experience.   I was more likely to go to a group event again.

Review of social networking tips:  1.  take baby steps and start with events that are safe to you

2. Add events with more people and more activity gradually

3.  Listen to your body and when to go rest

4. Have Fun!!



 “All too frequently, anxiety crushes not only your spirit and your potential, but your ability to take care of your mind and body. “ ~Jonathan Davidson and Henry Dreher, The Anxiety Book: Developing Strength in the Face of Fear


One more great quote:

“Nerves and butterflies are fine – they’re a physical sign that you’re mentally ready and eager.  You have to get the butterflies to fly in formation, that’s the trick.” ~Steve Bull


Leave us a comment and tell us how your social event experience was.

GIS tracking of West Nile Virus

Technology to Help Track WNV

The West Nile Virus (WNV) season is starting to heat up, although states like California have already seen human cases earlier in the year.   The current surveillance systems used by counties are people going out to sites trapping mosquitoes and bringing them back to a lab to be processed for WNV sampling.  With our vast amounts of technology, why are there not better surveillance systems for mosquitoes?


There is technology out there to track possible WNV mosquitos.   Like many technologies it gets lost due to funding or lack of confidence in the people.   There is a man in Texas that has a passion to help people be protected from WNV.   There is a website he has created with current maps of mosquito activity by state and city.  Frio Nature Conservancy (FNC) uses information from DNA testing, satellite imagery and Doppler Radar, capable of tracking the mosquito activity.  Those areas can be further tested, sprayed or people made aware of mosquito activity in the area to avoid.

This system is known as GIS.  GIS, also known as Geographical Information System, allows us to analyze, interpret, and understand data so we can visualize how it will help us in the future or present.   This mapping system has been used for analyzing NY City flooding, St Kitts land use, and Ft Collins City map in real time.   Why not use it for west nile virus mosquito surveillance?

It is People like John of FNC creating surveillance systems like this that create data to help an area respond sooner to WNV mosquito activity.  The outcome would possibly be less human cases.

Go check out Frio Nature Conservancy at http://www.friocon.org/.


      The Survivors can make a difference – we just have to keep spreading the word.”   ~ John R