Man dies from hantavirus in China: Everything You Need To Know About the New Hantavirus

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According to a press release, a man from Yunnan, China has tested positive for Hantavirus on Monday. It is said that he had died while on his way back to Shandong Province for work on a chartered bus, according to China’s Global Times. In a shocking event, 32 other people have also been tested with the same virus.

What exactly is the hantavirus/hantavirus pulmonary syndrome?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) is a disease in which, in the late stage of infection with a hantavirus subtype, hantaviruses are a family of viruses which are spread mainly by rodents and can cause varied diseases in people.

Health officials first identified HPS in an outbreak in 1993 in the “Four Corners” area of the southwestern U.S. Hantavirus spreads to humans by rodent urine, feces, saliva, and by airborne particles containing these items.

Is hantavirus contagious?

Although like COVID-19, HPS is a virus that affects one’s respiratory system, it is not an airborne virus and has been around for several years but cannot be transmitted from one person to another.HPS is not contagious from person to person. The virus spreads from rodents to humans. Although outbreaks seem like there is person-to-person transfer, outbreaks are usually noted among groups of people exposed to the same infected rodent population; but those with HPS infections do not transfer them to other uninfected individuals.

Early signs and symptoms ?

The symptoms and signs of HPS fall into early and late stages. Early HPS signs and symptoms begin about one to five weeks after the person contacts hantavirus associated with rodent urine, feces, or saliva. The early symptoms are flu-like, last about four to 10 days, and include fatigue, fever, and muscle aches, along with headaches, dizziness, chills and abdominal problems. If left untreated, it can lead to coughing and shortness of breath and can be fatal, with a mortality rate of 38 percent, according to CDC.

What is the treatment for hantavirus ?

At this time, there is no definitive treatment for HPS other than early recognition of HPS and subsequent medical support (usually consisting of symptomatic medical treatment and respiratory support or mechanical ventilation). 

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