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hanta virus

bhjelle at unm.edu bhjelle at unm.edu
Fri Mar 31 09:56:29 EST 1995

In article <Bernstein.72.0016DDE0 at WSU-ID.Dayton.OH.US>,
Jack M. Bernstein, M.D. <Bernstein at WSU-ID.Dayton.OH.US> wrote:
>In article <3l99h1$bis at usenet.srv.cis.pitt.edu> Sally Neiser <swn+ at pitt.edu> writes:
>>From: Sally Neiser <swn+ at pitt.edu>
>>Subject: hanta virus
>>Date: 28 Mar 1995 15:21:05 GMT
>>I'm new to this group, and have a question on the hanta (sp?)
>>virus that was spread by deermice in Arizona a year or so ago.
>>I'm going to a Hopi Indian reservation near Houck, AZ, and
>>wondered if there would be any danger to young children if
>>they went along. Any advice would be much appreciated. TIA. 
>It is unlikely that a "tourist" would catch this virus. The "outbreak" was 
>associated with an explosive increase in the deer mouse population associated 
>with a more rainy than usual season. These mice came indoors and the virus was 
>transmitted, presumably, by inhaling the virus which was excreted in the mouse 
>urine and then contaminated the dirt in the dwellings in question.
There is hantavirus in Houck, and have been cases in the
immediate vicinity. I agree with the above poster that odds are   
low, and there has not been a universally-accepted case of HPS
(hantavirus pulmonary syndrome) in anyone under 11. There was a
3 year old who was enrolled in a study as a "control" who turned
out unequivocally seropositive for Four Corners virus; retrospectively
he was discovered to have had a pulmonary disease shortly
before the blood was sampled, but so mild that no one is
anxious to call it HPS. The main thing to consider in Four
Corners or elsewhere is the degree of rodent activity in the
buildings you will be staying in. If you stay where there is
obvious rodent activity, you have higher risk. Check with
Arizona Department of Health Services to find out what specific
precautions you should take if you find yourself in a setting
with lots of rodent activity.


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