Rodents are some of those animals that you should stay away from, thinking only about some terrible diseases that they can spread. The bubonic plague, for instance, which killed about 25 million people, was caused by fleas carried by rats. Rodents are now the main animals affected by the hantavirus, a virus that also affects humans and can cause very unpleasant effects such as fever, fatigue, muscle aches, vomiting, diarrhoea, nausea, and more.
You can get hantavirus when particles that contain the virus are stirred into the air from urine, saliva, or droppings from rodents. In other words, stay away from those tiny creatures, regardless of how cute you may find them!
First human case of hantavirus in Michigan, no person-to-person transmission in the US
Although Michigan reported its first case of a person infected with hantavirus, according to ClickOnDetroit.com, there are no documented cases of human to human transmission of the virus in the entire US.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) revealed that an adult female in Washtenaw County was the unlucky person infected with hantavirus. She was recently hospitalized because of a serious pulmonary illness caused by the virus.
Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, a chief medical executive and also a chief deputy for health at MDHHS, declared:
HPS is caused by some strains of hantavirus and is a rare but severe and sometimes fatal respiratory disease that can occur one to five weeks after a person has exposure to fresh urine, droppings or saliva from infected rodents.
Khaldun also added:
Anyone who comes into contact with rodents that carry hantavirus is at risk for HPS and healthcare providers with a suspect case of hantavirus should contact their local health department to report the case and discuss options for confirmatory testing.