how common is hantavirus in manitoba

  • 3 min read
  • Jan 26, 2020

Spring cleaning brings risk of hantavirus | CBC News
Spring cleaning brings risk of hantavirus | CBC News

Hantaviruses is a virus that is found in urine, feces and saliva of rodents, the most common deer mouse. People may be infected by coming into contact with it. They can also catch the infection after being bitten by an infected rodent. North American hantavirus infection is a rare but serious illness. This is caused by certain strains, Sin Nombre virus. Infection can result in Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), which begins with flu-like illness getting worse more and more. This ultimately makes one difficulty breathing.

Image Content Provider: CDC / DPDx – Melanie Moser

Symptoms of HPS usually occur between 3 days to 6 weeks after exposure to the virus. Typical symptoms are similar to flu. These symptoms can include fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, muscle aches, diarrhea, abdominal pain and shortness of breath. Symptoms usually begin mild but may worsen. Asymptomatic infections are rare.

The most common host of hantavirus are deer mouse. Other species of rodents have proven to be infected though. Mouse deer can be found mainly in rural and semi-rural areas. They can also be located in urban centers. They often target homes and old buildings, especially in autumn.

Hantavirus is rarely, if ever, spread from person to person. It has never been documented in North America. Hantavirus infection usually spreads to people when they come into contact with feces, urine or saliva of infected rodents. This also occurs when people inhale the virus particles that get into the air when the feces, urine or nesting materials moved.

There is currently no cure for HPS. However, early detection and medical care is very important. This is because 30-40% of cases of HPS were fatal, usually within a few days after the initial symptoms appear. They were infected with HPS may be given for fever and pain, as well as oxygen therapy.

The best way to minimize your risk of contracting HPS is to ensure rodent control in and around the house. You should treat all rodent droppings as potentially dangerous. Avoid all contact with rodents and learn how to safely clean up rodent feces. For more information, please see the link below.

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