WASHOE COUNTY, Nev. (775 Times, NV Globe) – The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) has identified a Hantavirus infection in a Washoe County individual.
The patient is an adolescent male who has been hospitalized. There has been no update on the person’s condition, and a case investigation is underway.
This is the first Hantavirus infection recorded in Washoe County since December 2020. There have been four instances recorded since 2019, with one fatality.
Hantavirus is an uncommon respiratory disease that can cause significant sickness in people. It spreads by inhaling or touching virus particles following contact with infected rodents, most often deer mice. This is common while working or playing in locations where mouse droppings, urine, or saliva have accumulated, or when cleaning up rodent droppings or nesting material.
Hantavirus symptoms might appear anywhere from a few days to 8 weeks after exposure. Initial symptoms may include fever, headache, stomach discomfort, vomiting, diarrhea, muscular pains, chills, and disorientation. Late symptoms, which include coughing, shortness of breath, and fluid buildup in the lungs, appear four to ten days after the initial symptoms.
Although there is no particular cure for hantavirus, anybody experiencing these symptoms after coming into contact with deer mice or their excrement should seek medical assistance promptly. If infected people are identified early and treated, their health outcomes may improve.
* Do not clean or vacuum the area where urine, droppings, or nesting material has been found.
* When cleaning urine and/or droppings, a solution of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water should be used (1.5 cups bleach to 1 gallon of water). Spray the solution over rodent droppings and allow for 5 minutes before cleaning with disposable paper towels or a cloth.
* Wear latex, vinyl, or rubber gloves and a face mask to avoid touching or breathing in virus particles.
* Identify mouse-infested locations, plug apertures, and install traps; a deer mouse can fit through a nickel-sized opening.
Seek expert help from a registered pest control operator for further information on how to keep deer mice out of your home and living places.
(This report was assisted by the Washoe County Health District.)
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