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Biological Health Threat – Fatal Hantavirus (HPS) [Update 2016-06-16]: New Mexico


Published Date: 2016-06-16 14:42:26
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Hantavirus update – Americas (31): USA (NM), fatal
Archive Number: 20160616.4291571

Date: Tuesday, 14 June 2016, 11:29 AM
Source: KOB 4 [edited]

A 25-year-old McKinley County man has died from an illness contracted via Hantavirus, the New Mexico Department of Health announced Tuesday [14 Jun 2016].

The man died of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS). His case was the 5th case of HPS in the state so far in 2016, and the 3rd death.

The virus is transmitted by rodents – primarily the deer mouse in New Mexico — via urine, dropping and saliva. People contract HPS by breathing in the virus.

Early symptoms of hantavirus [infections] include fever and aches, headaches, nausea, abdominal pain and a cough, which can eventually progress. They sometimes do not develop for up to 6 weeks after the person is exposed to the virus. Anyone with similar symptoms is advised to contact a doctor immediately.

There was only 1 case of HPS in the state in 2015; the woman survived. In 2014, there were 6 cases, 3 of which were fatal.

[Byline: Blair Miller]

Communicated by:
ProMED-mail from HealthMap Alerts

[Sin Nombre hantavirus is endemic in the southwestern USA, including New Mexico. The spring season often brings with it sporadic cases of hantavirus infections, as cabins and other buildings unused over the winter are opened up and cleaned in the western USA. The virus responsible for this and previous cases in New Mexico doubtless is Sin Nombre. Deer mice, _Peromyscus maniculatus_, are the reservoir host of the virus. Sin Nombre virus infections can be serious, with a relatively high case fatality rate associated with hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome. Prompt medical attention is essential.

An image of the deer mouse, _P. maniculatus_, can be seen at – Mod.TY

A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at:]

See Also

Hantavirus update – Americas (30): USA (UT) 20160603.4264532
Hantavirus update – Americas (28): USA (CO), Chile (BI) 20160520.4235672
Hantavirus update – Americas (27): USA (MT, NM) 20160517.4227845
Hantavirus update – Americas (23): USA (CO) 20160424.4179685
Hantavirus update – Americas (18): USA (NM) 20160406.4142637
Hantavirus – Americas (16): USA (AZ) 20160325.4119418
Hantavirus update – Americas (07): USA (NM) 20160205.3997720
Hantavirus update – Americas (05): USA (AZ) 20160126.3967940
Hantavirus update – Americas (03): USA (AZ) comment 20160116.3942572
Hantavirus update – Americas (02): USA (AZ) 20160114.3936962

A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases

Category C Priority Pathogens

Hantavirus occurs in nature, but it is also considered a Category C bioterrorism agent. Category C organisms/biological agents are the third highest priority , and are emerging pathogens that might be engineered for mass dissemination because of their natural availability, ease of production and dissemination, high mortality rate, and ability to cause a major health impact.

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