As the world is fighting the deadly Coronavirus (COVID 19), a 'new' virus mainly spread from rodents is causing more panic among people. It is Hantavirus. The panic began after a man from China's Yunnan province died from Hantavirus while on a bus to the Shandong province on Monday (March 23, 2020). As various stories about Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) is being widely shared, we bring to you causes of Hantavirus, its symptoms and prevention, the way it gets transmitted and vaccine for its cure. It comes at a time when Coronavirus has affected countries worldwide with most governments declaring lockdown. And it is certainly no good news. But instead of panicking, one must try and grasp as much information (right information) as possible. Hantavirus: News of Person Dying Due to Another Virus in China Leaves Netizens Scared; Here’s All You Need to Know About Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome.
What is Hantavirus?
According to the Centre for Disease Control (CDC), the virus mainly spreads from rodents. Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome is a respiratory disease caused by infection with hantaviruses. It can be fatal in humans only in some cases. The CDC website reads, "Hantaviruses in the Americas are known as 'New World' hantaviruses and may cause hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS). Other hantaviruses, known as 'Old World' hantaviruses, are found mostly in Europe and Asia and may cause hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS)."
What Are The Causes And Symptoms of Hantavirus?
Some of the early symptoms of Hantavirus include muscle ache in hips, thighs, back and shoulder other than fever and fatigue. Some people also experience vomiting, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. The incubation period is believed to be between one to eight days post their exposure to the urine, droppings or saliva of the infected rodent. When left untreated for 10 days, late HPS will start appearing in those people. It includes coughing and shortness of breath. Hantavirus Fact Check: Can the Virus Transmit From Human to Human and Do You Need to Quarantine? Know How People Can Be Infected With HPS.
The virus is spread by the urine of rodents, faeces, saliva as the virus infects them. It is not airborne and cannot be transmitted from one person to another. It can only spread by touching eyes, nose or mouth after touching the dropping, urine or nesting materials of the rodents. As per medical experts, around 15-20 percent of deer mice are infected with Hantavirus.
Prevention And Cure to Hantavirus:
Stay away places were droppings of rodents are found. If you think you are at a place that is exposed to mouse droppings, then wear rubber gloves and a mask. Disinfect places that contain mouse droppings so infected dust does not spread in the air. Keep your house safe from rodents and seal all things at home which can attract rodents.