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After Coronavirus, Hantavirus Hits China

Months after the deadly coronavirus has originated in China and spread across the world, a new hantavirus is spreading in 32 provinces in China.

On March 23, Mr. Tian, a laborer in Yunnan province, died of viral infections. Autopsy results showed that the virus was hantavirus.

What is hantavirus? 

Hantavirus, also known as orthohantavirus, normally causes infection in rodents, but does not cause disease in them. Humans can infected by the virus through rodents. There is no known treatment, cure or vaccine for this virus infection. Though the virus can be fatal, it is not as deadly as coronavirus.

Hantavirus causes a disease called Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), as reported from 34 states in 2011. The chance of getting the disease is 1 in 13,000,000, which is less likely than being struck by lightning.

What are the first symptoms of the virus?

Early symptoms include fatigue, fever and muscle aches, especially in the large muscle groups—thighs, hips, back, and sometimes shoulders. These symptoms are universal. There may also be headaches, dizziness, chills, and abdominal problems, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

How do people get the virus infection?

Transmission of the virus occurs from rodents who carry the virus to humans. The most common type is airborne transmission, which occurs when people create in the air contaminated with the virus due to fresh rodent urine, dropping or saliva. Other possibilities of transmission include rodent bites, eating food contaminated by the virus and touching something that has been contaminated and then touching their nose or mouth.

Person-to-person transmission cases have been reported for people who were in close contact with the virus patients.

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Written by Memester

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