The human race is having a hard time dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic, and this is why the Chapare virus should not be taken for granted. The United States’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed that this deadly virus can also be transmitted human-to-human. After the virus was detected, many people around the world are wondering about "what is Chapare virus?" "Chapare virus symptoms," and more. If you have been wondering about the same, then do not worry, here is all you need to know about it.
The recent reports of the Chapare virus reveal that it causes haemorrhagic fever (CHHF) which is similar to the Ebola epidemic. In comparison to COVID-19, experts believe that this deadly virus may not cause a pandemic situation. However, it is important to be aware of this new disease. The Chapare virus belongs to the arenavirus family that spreads with direct human to human contact. So, a Chapare virus-infected person can spread the virus through direct contact with bodily fluids of infected patients, direct contact with infected rodents or indirectly through the urine or faeces of infected rodents.
Also Read | Los Angeles readies curfew plan amid virus spike
According to the CDC, there is a total of two documented outbreaks of CHHF found. The first incident happened in Bolivia’s Chapare province in 2003 which led to one death. As it was first detected in Chapare province, the virus is named Chapare virus. The second documented incident points to the country’s Caranavi province which occurred last year that is 2019. However, this time the incident resulted in five confirmed cases, including three fatalities. It also helped scientists better understand it as they claimed that the two patients transmitted the virus to three healthcare workers in Bolivia’s de facto capital, La Paz.
Experts also found out that there was no proof of rodents being the source. Also, the CDC studies revealed that an infected person can spread the disease to others through contact with the patient’s body fluids, or during healthcare procedures that can aerosolise the infected person’s body fluids (such as saliva, urine, semen and respiratory secretions). However, health researchers need more research to understand how the virus spreads as there have been notably a few documented cases of Chapare virus in humans so far.
The information about the Chapare virus is currently limited as there have been quite a small amount of documented incidents of it. Nevertheless, CDC notes down a few common symptoms that were noted in the confirmed CHHP patients. As per the CDC, the development of symptoms may vary from 4 to 21 days for arenaviruses from the time between initial exposure.
Similar to the other viral hemorrhagic fevers, these symptoms usually occur before later stage hemorrhagic signs (bleeding). For now, there is no confirmation if the virus can be transmitted from a mother to child. But, the CDC says other arenaviruses have been documented to cause infection in utero.
As of now, CHHF does not have any treatment available. So, experts are going for a supportive therapy including maintenance of hydration, management of shock such as fluid resuscitation, administration of vasopressin stocks, sedation, pain relief and transfusions if necessary. Also, recovering it is said that the patients can potentially infect others through bodily fluids.
CDC lists several preventions one of which is to avoid contact with rodents to prevent the spread of the Chapare virus. So, people will have to seal all the holes and gaps in homes and other buildings to minimize rodent infestation. Clean up any food that may be accessible to rodents and consume fresh products, especially in the areas where they see signs of rodent infestation. It is important to avoid contact with the body fluids of people who are sick with Chapare.
Disclaimer: The content provided above is for information purpose. This is no way intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.