HANTAVIRUS – AMERICAS (27): USA (NEVADA)
Date: Mon 14 Aug 2023
Source: Washoe Life (Washoe County official website, Nevada) [edited] https://washoelife.washoecounty.gov/health-district/health-district-confirms-hantavirus-case-in-washoe-county-2/
The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) is reporting a confirmed
Hantavirus case in a Washoe County resident.
The person is a male in his 60s who has been hospitalized after being
exposed to rodent droppings weeks prior. There is no update on the
person’s condition and the investigation is ongoing.
This is the 1st Hantavirus case reported in Washoe County since
November 2022. The last Hantavirus death was reported in December
WCHD encourages Washoe County residents to be careful and take
necessary precautions to prevent contracting Hantavirus, which is a
rare respiratory disease that can cause serious illness and can
sometimes be fatal. It spreads by breathing in or touching viral
particles of infected rodents, most commonly deer mice. Anyone who
encounters rodents carrying the virus is at risk, but this typically
occurs when working or recreating in areas where mouse droppings,
urine, or saliva may have collected or when cleaning up rodent
droppings or nesting material.
Early Hantavirus symptoms can include fever, headache, abdominal pain,
vomiting, diarrhea, muscle aches, chills and dizziness 1-8 weeks after
exposure. Late symptoms develop 4 to 10 days after initial symptoms
and include coughing, shortness of breath and fluid buildup in the
lungs. Learn more about signs and symptoms.
There is no specific treatment for hantavirus; however, anyone with
these symptoms after contact with deer mice or their waste should seek
medical attention immediately. If infected individuals are recognized
early and receive medical care, health outcomes may improve.
Prevention is key; always take precautions when cleaning to reduce
your risk of getting sick:
– Do not sweep or vacuum the area with urine, droppings, or nesting
– A solution of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water should be used when
cleaning urine and/or droppings (1.5 cups bleach to 1 gallon of
– Spray the solution on areas with rodent droppings and leave for 5
minutes before wiping the area with disposable paper towels or cloth.
– Wear gloves (i.e., latex, vinyl, rubber) and a face mask to avoid
touching or breathing in viral particles.
– Identify areas where mice are and plug openings and set traps; a
deer mouse can fit through an opening the size of a nickel [2.12 cm
– Seek professional assistance from a licensed pest control operator
for additional guidance to prevent deer mice from accessing household
and living areas.
For additional information on how to safely clean up after rodents,
visit https://www.cdc.gov/rodents/cleaning/. Go here
[https://www.cdc.gov/hantavirus/index.html] for more Hantavirus
information from the Centers for Disease Control or Prevention (CDC).
Health District changing name to Northern Nevada Public Health