In those times filled with panic and fear among people around the world due Covid-19, many posts on social media are talking about a virus from China called Hantavirus.
A man in China died and was tested positive for this virus on Monday earlier this week.
Panic and fear spread everywhere on social media and people were wondering if this virus could be the next pandemic. However, the good news is: No, it is not.
Here are some facts about the virus which can help you get a better vision and in turn, calm your nerves down.
Hantavirus is a disease that infects the respiratory system that comes from infected rodents. In fact, it’s not a new virus as it was already discovered long time ago. It was first discovered in 1950 during the American-Korean War in Hantan River in Korea.
The virus comes only if you get in direct contact with rodents infected with HPS. According to CDC, no cases have been discovered in the United States came from person-to person transmission and it was only rare cases which were found in Chile and Argentina.
“It spreads from rat/mice if humans ingest their body fluids. Human-human transmission is rare.” “Please do not panic, unless you plan to eat rats,” Swedish scientist Dr. Sumaiya Shaikh tweeted.
The places which may contain this virus are rural areas, forests, fields, farms ,or any place where rodents may exist.
But how can this virus be transmitted to people?
Actually, it’s through several ways:
If an infected rodent bites someone.
If you touch something which consists of infected rodent’s urine, saliva or feces and then touch your mouth or nose.
To have a job that gets you in direct contact with rodents such as pest control, construction, or utility work.
And of course, land based activities, such as hunting, hiking, and camping which of course you will find rodents or any type of animals and insects there.
What about the symptoms?
Early symptoms include fever, muscle aches especially in the large muscle groups, and fatigue. In addition to, dizziness, chills, headaches, diarrhea, and nausea.
And after the initial phase of illness -from four to ten days- another late symptom may appear such shortness of breath and coughing.
Can the virus be transmitted between animals?
Actually, there is no evidence or research which proves that Hantavirus could transmit to any type of animals. Pets like cats and dogs are not known to carry the virus. However, there can be risky when they prey is infected by rodents and is brought the owners’ homes.
Therefore, dear readers, all researchse proved that person-to person transmission is very rare so please do not panic unless you decide to eat rats.