The United States recorded the most deaths from rabies in a decade in 2021

Three species of bats A) Eptesicus fuscus (large brown bat), B) Lasionycteris noctivagans (silver-haired bat), and C) Tadarida brasiliensis (Mexican free-tailed bat) implicated in three reported US rabies cases of the year the past.

Three types of bats a) Eptesicus fuscus (big brown bat), b) Lasionycteris noctivagans (silver-haired bat) and C) Tadarida brasiliensis (Mexican free-tailed bat) has been implicated in three of the US rabies cases reported last year.
Photo: CDC: Photo A/Patient Unidentified; Photo B/Mark Mayfield; Photo C / Stephen Jergeni

Rabies was unusually deadly In the United States last year, new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found, withat least five people are dying From Viral disease 2021. Rabies can be transmitted to humans of infected animals and is almost always fatal without speed Post-exposure treatment.

Center for Disease Control Tell The Associated Press reported late Thursday night that five cases of rabies were reported in 2021. Three of them The cases are detailed in a new report By CDC scientists and local health officials chest Friday. These three The deaths included people who contracted rabies in August, all from close contact Bts.

In one case, previously Covered By Gizmodo, a man in his 80s in Illinois captured the bat that bit him and sent him for testing, which confirmed the presence of rabies. But he refused preventative treatment a Rabies vaccine with donated antibodies. At that time, the reason for the man’s refusal was unclear, but new The CDC report says he cited a fear of vaccines. About a month later, he developed common rabies symptoms such as neck pain, paralysis, altered mental status, and difficulty swallowing, and died soon after. It was the first rabies death reported in the state in nearly 70 years.

else death Share little boy in Texas, who was taken to hospital in November after coming into contact with a bat. In the third case, a man in idaho Didn’t realize the need for rabies treatment after an encounter with bats Becouse is he thinks was not little or scratched.

Rabies is a dreaded viral infection that targets the brain and spinal cord. Depending on the course of exposure, it may take weeks to months before symptoms appear, during which time post-exposure prophylaxis can almost always prevent illness and death. Once people start feeling sick, not much can be done, and these Cases are almost always fatal. Although now rare in many parts of the world, due to animal control and dog vaccination programmes, many wild animals Mammals The virus is carried including by bats. Only one to three cases of rabies are reported annually in the United States at present, and the 2021 total is the above Seen since 2011.

Unfortunately, one of the According to the Associated Press, the deaths included a man who received post-exposure treatment but likely did not respond to it due to undocumented problems with his immune system. The fifth death involves a person who was bitten by a rabies dog while traveling in the Philippines and later died in New York.

Contrary to popular belief, bats are not prolific carriers of rabies, with only a small percentage believed to have been infected with it at any given time (although there are some speculation That bats may not get sick from rabies like other animals, they can still die from it). But the CDC report The authors note that about 60,000 Americans seek treatment for potential rabies exposure each year, and that about two-thirds of those exposures likely involve bats.

Although rabies remains A rare problem in the United States, the report some notes Wise steps can be taken to further reduce risk. People should be aware that bats can carry rabies and avoid contact with them, the authors say, and if they come into close contact with bats, they should try to catch them for testing. People should also be quickly evaluated for treatment after close exposure to bats or wildlife. It must be Treated if rabies cannot be ruled out.

Unfortunately, while these treatments are lifesaving, they can also be ExpensiveIt costs thousands, even with insurance.

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