Zoonosis is the name of the infections that have to do with transmission between animals and humans. In many cases, zoonotic diseases can be lethal to humans as opposed to their animal hosts. They can be caused by parasites, fungi, bacteria, or viruses, and many different animals may be involved in this type of infection, rodents included.
One of the most popular zoonotic diseases from rodents in the United States is hantavirus. Back in 1993, this infection caused an outbreak of febrile disease rapidly evolving to respiratory distress and shock. Many patients died due to hantavirus infections, especially in the southwestern area of the United States. They were caused by one of the deadliest strains of the hantavirus family of viruses.
There are many types of hantavirus, each one featuring a different array of sings and symptoms, but the most common and the ones you should be aware of are as follows:
› There are many types of hantavirus, each one featuring a different array of signs and symptoms, but the most common and the ones you should be aware of are as follows:
1. Prodrome symptoms
All hantaviruses have a prodromal disease. It is characterized by unspecific symptoms that may be caused by various diseases. In this prodromal disease comes 2 or 3 weeks after the initial exposure to the virus. In most cases, the virus enters through the lungs, it is swallowed by phagocytes and transported to the nearby lymph nodes. Then, it disseminates to other parts of the body, and the prodrome symptoms start, usually with mild fever, chills, and muscle pain, also known as myalgia. These prodrome symptoms last 3 to 10 days and in this stage it is not possible to differentiate hantavirus from other infections.