Does China have another virus outbreak of Hantavirus?
When the world is trying to find a cure for the dreaded coronavirus pandemic, China came up with another virus, which is Hantavirus. This virus has been known to exist for decades.
China’s Global Times tweeted that the man from Yunnan Province died on his way back to Shandong Province for work on a bus on Monday. The 32 other 32 people on the bus were also tested for the virus.
The virus was named as Hanta virus after the name of the river Hantan. This initial discovery dates back to scientific approaches that were initiated after the Korean War (1951-1953), during which more than 3,000 cases of Korean hemorrhagic fever were reported among the United Nations (UN) troops. In 1981, a new genus termed as “hantavirus” was introduced in the Bunyaviridae family, which included the viruses that cause hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS).
What exactly is the Hantavirus?
According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Hantavirus is a family of viruses that are spread mainly by rodents and can cause various diseases in people. It can cause hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) and hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS).
Hantavirus in American is known as ‘New World’ Hantavirus and may cause hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS). Other hantaviruses, known as ‘Old World’ hantaviruses, are found mostly in Europe and Asia and may cause hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS).
How does the Hantavirus spread?
Any man, woman, or child who is around mice or rats that carry harmful hantaviruses can get HPS. People get HPS when they breathe in hantaviruses. This can happen when rodent urine and droppings that contain Hantavirus are stirred up into the air. People can also become infected when they touch mouse or rat urine, droppings, or nesting materials that contain the virus and then touch their eyes, nose, or mouth. They can also get HPS from a mouse or rat bite.
What are the symptoms of Hantavirus?
Early symptoms of Hantavirus include fever, fatigue, muscle pain along with headache. 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 the CDC. Usually, people do not have a runny nose, sore throat, or a rash. While the initial symptoms of HFRS too remain the same, it can cause low blood pressure, acute shock, vascular leakage, and acute kidney failure.
The Hantavirus case comes at a time when the total count of those infected by novel coronavirus globally is near 400,000 marks, and scientists are yet to find a cure for it. The global death toll reached 18,000 marks. Though countries across the globe are on high alert due to uncertainty around the coronavirus, there is no indication that the Hantavirus poses a global public health threat.
Because Hantavirus is not new and because it isn’t transmitted between humans, no one should fear that a new outbreak of disease caused by Hantavirus is looming.
It’s not just Hantavirus, there’s more!
According to the South China Morning, China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs reported on an outbreak of the often-fatal H5N1 bird flu in thousands of chickens in the Hunan province, which sits on the southern border of the Hubei province, the center of the coronavirus.
As per the official statement, the farm has 7,850 chickens, and 4,500 of the chickens have died from the contagion. There are no reported human cars of the H5N1 avian flu, and transmission of the disease to humans is difficult. Nearly all cases of the avian flu infection in people have been associated with “close contact with infected live or dead birds, or H5N1- contaminated environments. However, the outbreak is cause for concern because the contagion is often fatal, with a 60% mortality rate among infected humans – that’s even deadlier than coronavirus. Plus, the H5Nq bird flu can cause severe respiratory illness, including pneumonia, any neurological changes such as an altered mental state of seizures.
The world is definitely not ready to deal with another virus outbreak.
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