Diseases from Rodents
Rodents like rats and mice spread over 35 diseases worldwide. They spread these diseases to humans through contact with their feces, urine and saliva, through contact from handling them directly and through bites. Most of these diseases are life-threatening and have been found to affect many people during each outbreak. Some of diseases directly transmitted by these rodents are listed below.
Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS) is a serious, oftentimes fatal respiratory disease in humans caused by infection with Hantavirus. Humans contract this disease from direct contact with infected rats and mice. It is also spread by breathing in aerosolized particles of dust contaminated with urine or droppings. Although less likely to happen, Hantavirus is also spread from bite wounds or passed on from person to person. The early symptoms of HPS are similar to common flu which includes fever, headaches, muscle aches, upset stomach, dizziness and chills. After 4 to 10 days, the late and life-threatening symptoms appear. This includes difficulty in breathing, cough and shortness of breath as the lungs gets filled with fluid. HPS is considered fatal with a mortality rate of 38%.
Hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome (HFRS) is a group of diseases caused by several viruses from the same family as the Hantavirus that cause HPS. These clinically similar diseases include Korean hemorrhagic fever, epidemic hemorrhagic fever, and nephropathis epidemica. HFRS is spread in the same manner as HPS. Unlike HPS, HFRS symptoms are slower to develop, usually within 1 to 2 weeks but sometimes taking up to 8 weeks. Initial symptoms include intense headaches, abdominal and back pain, nausea, blurred vision, fever and chills. The symptoms progress to low blood pressure, vascular leakage, acute shock and acute renal failure. The severity of the disease depends on the types of virus causing it. HFRS has a mortality rate that ranges from 5 to 15%.
Lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCM) is viral disease caused by lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) whose primary host is the common house mouse. Humans become infected from exposure to urine, saliva, droppings or nesting materials. The virus can also be transmitted when these materials come in contact with broken skin, mucous membranes, the mouth and the eyes. Bites from an infected mouse are also another mode of transmission. Transmission from one person to another has not been observed except when an infected pregnant woman passes it on to the fetus. Some people contract the virus without getting sick. For those who are susceptible, the symptoms occur after 8-13 day from exposure. LCM symptoms occur in phases, the first one consists of malaise, fever, vomiting, lack of appetite, headache and muscle aches. After recovery of a few days, the next more severe phase occur which includes symptoms of meningitis or encephalitis. In some cases LCM caused increased brain fluids (hydrocephalous) or inflammation of the spinal cord (myelitis). LCM’s mortality rate is less than 1%. It is not usually fatal.
Preventing Human Exposure
Rats and mice are found throughout the world. Whenever there is food or water, it is difficult to keep them from intruding into human spaces. To prevent human exposure to diseases carried by these rodents, an effective rodent control should be in place in homes and other spaces frequented by people.
Akkad Pest Control Services
In the UAE, Akkad Pest Control Services can help you identify and eliminate rodent infestation. With our team of experts spread nationwide, we offer highly effective rodent control services in Dubai as well as in other parts of UAE.