Record incidence of hantavirus disease

2824 new cases of hantavirus disease were reported in Germany in 2012, the highest number ever in a single year. In the current issue of Deutsches Ärzteblatt International, Detlev Krüger and coauthors present the main facts about this disease.

Every two to three years, large outbreaks of hantavirus disease are caused by Puumala virus, which is transmitted by bank voles and is endemic to southwestern and western Germany. In the north and east of the country, hantavirus infections are caused by the Dobrava-Belgrad virus, which is transmitted by striped .

The manifestations that typically arise over the course of hantavirus disease come in several phases. The first sign is often an otherwise unexplained high fever; this may be followed by shock, renal failure, and pulmonary failure, depending on the severity of the disease. Thus, whenever persons living in high-risk areas present with fever of unknown origin or of unknown origin, physicians should consider the possibility of a hantavirus infection. Once the suspicion of hantavirus disease has been raised, special techniques can be used for precise viral diagnostic evaluation.

More information: Dtsch Arztebl Int 2013; 110[27-28]: 461-7

Provided by Deutsches Aerzteblatt International

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Can hantavirus infection spread among humans?

Jan 18, 2008

In connection with last year's epidemic, a research team at Umea University in Sweden has managed for the first time to show that hantavirus exists in human saliva. This raises the question of whether this contagion can spread ...

More Yosemite tourists infected with deadly virus

Aug 31, 2012

Six visitors to California's famous Yosemite National Park have now been infected with a rare rodent-born virus, two of whom have died, officials said Thursday, in an update on the outbreak.

Deadly virus discovered in bats also jumps species

Feb 08, 2013

(Medical Xpress)—Four new forms of hantavirus, one of the most virulent pathogens transmitted from animals to humans, have been identified by international research contributed to by the University of Sydney.

Recommended for you

Sri Lanka celebrates two years without malaria

8 minutes ago

Sri Lanka has not reported a local case of malaria since October 2012, according to the Sri Lankan Anti-Malarial Campaign. If it can remain malaria-free for one more year, the country will be eligible to apply to the World ...

Poll: Many doubt hospitals can handle Ebola

3 hours ago

A new poll finds most Americans have some confidence that the U.S. health care system will prevent Ebola from spreading in this country, but they're not so sure their local hospital can safely handle a patient.

Number of Ebola cases nears 10,000

4 hours ago

The number of people with Ebola is set to hit 10,000 in West Africa, the World Health Organization said, as the scramble to find a cure gathered pace.

'Breath test' shows promise for diagnosing fungal pneumonia

4 hours ago

Many different microbes can cause pneumonia, and treatment may be delayed or off target if doctors cannot tell which bug is the culprit. A novel approach—analyzing a patient's breath for key chemical compounds made by the ...

User comments