hantavirus pulmonary syndrome hps symptoms

  • 3 min read
  • Feb 23, 2020

Rodents and Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome | Massey Services, Inc.
Rodents and Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome | Massey Services, Inc.

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Since HPS affect a small population, “incubation” period is unknown. In most recorded cases, symptoms of 1 to 8 weeks after exposure. Early symptoms include fever, dry cough, body aches, headache, diarrhea and abdominal pain, similar to many other viral diseases. This can prevent HPS diagnosis before the disease advances.

If the early symptoms are not linked to exposure to hantavirus and untreated, symptoms will be late rapid onset. These symptoms include coughing and shortness of breath, which is the result of the blood vessels leak and cause fluid collection in the lungs, bleeding and failure of the heart to pump. The combination of these changes can lead to shock, multiple organ failure and even death

With this in mind, the main symptoms and signs to watch (with a history of exposure to rodents) include :.

Diagnosing HPS can be challenging because early symptoms mimic the flu. Currently there are no tests used to diagnose HPS, which is why a history of exposure to rodents is accompanied by fever and fatigue is a strong indicator of infection. If you are concerned that you may have been exposed, you should see your doctor immediately.

If you have unexplained fever, body aches, abdominal pain, diarrhea, headache, dry cough or difficulty breathing severe, you should see a health care provider. This is especially true if you live in the US southwest and exposed large rodent populations, their nesting material and waste.

And approved by the American Lung Association of Scientific and Editorial Medical Review Panel.

Page last updated: February 27, 2020

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