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Kaohsiung reports first hantavirus infection this year
Central News Agency
2014-02-25 09:41 PM
Taipei, Feb. 25 (CNA) Kaohsiung, a port city in southern Taiwan, on Tuesday reported the first confirmed case of hantavirus hemorrhagic fever in Taiwan this year. The patient is a 62-year-old man residing in the city's Cianjhen District, Kaohsiung's Department of Health said. The man, who often travels between Kaohsiung and Pingtung County where he grows fruits, fell ill on Feb. 3 and was later confirmed as being infected with the rodent-borne hantavirus, the department said. He has recovered since Feb.18 and his family and workers on his fruit farm have all tested negative for the virus, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said in a press release Tuesday. It said the man developed symptoms of fever and dizziness on Feb. 3 and was admitted to hospital in Kaohsiung on Feb. 6 as the symptoms escalated to include headache, fatigue, diarrhea, stomachache, and abnormal urine. Laboratory tests confirmed on Feb. 24 that the man was infected with hantavirus hemorrhagic fever, which is usually contracted though contact with the urine, saliva or feces of rodents, the CDC said. A 2010 study conducted in five municipalities in Taiwan found that people living or working in traditional and night markets are at high risk of hantavirus infection, according to the CDC. Taiwan reported 12 cases of hantavirus hemorrhagic fever between 2001 and 2013, the CDC said. The latest case has prompted Kaohsiung to launch a rodent eradication campaign, and steps are being taken to trace the source of the virus. (By Cheng Che-fon, Chen Ching-fang and Elizabeth Hsu)
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