As the world is still submerged in the waves of a fatal virus named corona virus, the traces of another virus surfacing from beneath has been reported lately. It has been successful in arousing intimidation and panic in the hearts of billion of people world-wide. This virus had been christened as, the hanta virus and, the origin of its name lays back to the Hantan River in South Korea as, the first case of HPS was observed in South Korea. The disease caused by this virus is called Hanta virus Pulmonary Syndrome is also known as, HPS is not a new disease, and its invention is dated back to the mid 90s which was the result of a scientific approach. HPS causes severe respiratory disorders, and these can be fatal in some extreme cases.
The history of the hanta virus lays back to the mid 90s, but it has been observed to pop up again several times. Such as in 1993, by the four corner region or even recently when an old man lost his life in China in 2020. This gave rise to the feeling of helplessness, and distress in people. Initially they were proliferated during the Korean War where several American, and Korean soldiers lost their lives in the battle of Korea owing to a mystifying, life-threatening virus.
This virus was isolated in 1976 from the lungs of mice by South Korean etiologic. Further, researches suggested that rodents, and mice were the host to these viruses. There are more than 21 species of hanta virus, residing in different species of rodents. These viruses were said to cause hemoroligic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS), and came with 10% mortality rate. It is found in Europe, Asia, and, Africa.
TRANSMISSION OF THE HANTA VIRUS
Hanta virus gets transmitted through urine, droplets, and saliva of host rodents. Generally the virus from the urine, droplets, and saliva gets stirred up in the air while cleaning. Thus, it gets transmitted just like any air-borne disease. It can even spread through a rat bite by a potential host, or by consuming the food that has been in contact with the saliva, urine, or droplets by a host rat. Only one of the specie of hanta virus has shown transmission from an infected person to a non-infected one. However, human to human transmission has not yet been confirmed by the researchers.
HPS is said to showcase it’s symptoms between 1-8 weeks of being infected with the virus. The symptoms are divided into two stages early symptoms and, the late symptoms. Early symptoms are that got exhibited in the early stage of the infection. The late symptoms are the one’s that got exhibited in the last stage of the infection. Muscle aches to the infected person sometimes become severe, and unbearable. The symptoms must be observed closely, and the person must go for the test as soon as possible. Though no medicine in particular has come out yet to treat this disease, but the drug named ribavirin has been used to treat it.
Early symptoms: The early symptoms can be confused with some common diseases such common cold, tiredness, cramps, etc.
3) Muscle ache
4) Dizziness and chills
5) Stomach cramps
Late symptoms: The late symptoms are difficult to deal with, and in some extreme cases turn lively blocks to cadaver. Hence, people that show late symptoms are often given oxygen, and mechanical ventilation.
1) Shortness of breath
2) Filling of lungs with liquid
As, it has been said by genius people “prevention is better than cure.” Thus, we must work on the preventive points of any disease. HPS is caused by different species of rats, so it can be prevented by avoiding any contact with rats. Other HPS preventive points to be kept in mind are:
a) Avoiding visit to villages or old buildings- Old, unclean buildings generally are a home to rats. Villages are known to inhabit wild rats, so they have a high probability of being a host to hanta virus. Thus, avoiding visit to such places can reduce the possibilities of being infected with hanta virus.
b) Conducting pest control operations in homes- Houses should be cleaned regularly, and pest control operations should be conducted to make a house free of rodents. Thus, avoiding contact with rats is the best way to prevent HPS.
c) Washing disclosed food, utensils as well as hands before eating- Food, utensils, and hands should be washed as these can come in contact with the urine, droplets, or saliva of infected rats.
d) Keeping eatable elements in protected containers- Food should not be kept in open, thus avoiding contamination with these viruses.
People can bring their bafflement, and perplexion to a halt as, there is nothing to be terrified about HPS. The right cup of safety, and precautions can easily help us move past this venom. So, all we need to stand against HPS is, avoiding the contact with mice, and rodents. Also, any similar symptoms must be taken seriously, and the person must go for a test. Just like little droplets of water successfully carve a ravishing ocean, little precaution can save our life from this ravishing disease.
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