What HantaVirus Basically Is?
Hantavirus belongs to that group of viruses which can cause a rare but serious lung disease called Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), most commonly found in North and South America, as well as Haemorrhagic Fever with Renal Syndrome, particularly in Europe and Asia, though the numbers of cases are quite low at all.
How HantaVirus Infects / Spreads?
A person becomes infected by this disease once they inhale respirable droplets of saliva released into the air by infected wild rodents, which include deer mouse, cotton rat, and red-backed vole, or through the droppings of the rodents. This virus gets in contact with a person couple of these ways as well, as either someone touches or eats something that is contaminated by saliva or droppings of the infected wild rodents, or that contaminated material gets into broken skin.
Well, the data suggests that this virus doesn’t transmit person to person but there were few cases reported in South America, which were genetically different than the ones reported in North America, suggest that person to person transmission is possible. Probably, that virus genetically distinct was Andes Hantavirus.
When HantaVirus Was First Identified?
Although this virus was first officially identified in Canada in the year 1994, when the researches started reviewing this disease, they surprisingly found a few similar sorts of cases (occurred earlier) linked to the Hantavirus back in 1989. 109 confirmed cases were reported in the country (as of January 2015), out of which about 27 lives claimed by this virus.
What Are The Symptoms?
Since there are several kinds of Hantaviruses persist around the different regions of the world, the appearance of the symptoms does vary, depending on what type of virus you are infected with Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS)
Symptoms for this virus may appear 1 to 6 weeks after exposure, they include:
- fever and chills
- vomiting or nausea
- muscle aches
- shortness of breath
- rapid heartbeat
Haemorrhagic Fever with Renal Syndrome:
Symptoms may include:
- back and stomach pain
- fever and chills
- nausea or vomiting
- red eyes or blurred vision
- severe headaches
- low blood pressure
The way it can be prevented is properly cleaning areas contaminated by infected rodents. Blocking those openings that might let rodents in, placing mousetraps throughout your home. Or if you are storing food/water in containers, store it with tightly fitted lids.
As told above, there is no specific cure to this disease, only early medical care in an intensive/supportive care unit, medication for fever and pain, maintaining oxygen levels, and preventing dehydration can help you recover from this fatal virus.