Lymphocytic choriomeningitis (or LCMV) is a bacterium carried by the house mouse, or other rodent, such as a hamster, guinea pig, or rat. The bacterium can be found in the saliva, blood, urine and droppings of an infected rodent.
Transmission of the Virus
A person can get LCMV when they are exposed to the germ discovered in droppings, blood, saliva, urine or nesting products of infected rodents. An individual is not known to pass on the germ to others except during solid organ transplantation or from an infected mother to her coming baby. Individuals who enter contact with urine, feces, saliva, or blood from a house mouse or other rodent are at higher risk. Owners of family pet mice, hamsters, or guinea pigs could also be at higher risk if their pet has ended up being infected from contact with a wild rodent. Lab employees who work with the germ are likewise at increased risk.
Symptoms and Signs
LCMV is most typically acknowledged as causing neurological disease, as its name suggests, though infection without symptoms or mild febrile health problems are more typical medical symptoms. For infected persons who do become ill, beginning of symptoms generally happens 8-13 days after exposure to the infection as part of a biphasic febrile disease. This preliminary phase, which might last as long as a week, usually begins with any or all of the following symptoms: fever, malaise, lack of hunger, muscle pains, headache, nausea, and vomiting. Other symptoms appearing less regularly consist of sore throat, cough, joint pain, chest pain, testicular pain, and parotid (salivary gland) pain.
Following a couple of days of recovery, a second phase of illness might take place. Symptoms may consist of meningitis (fever, headache, stiff neck, and so on), sleeping sickness (drowsiness, confusion, sensory disruptions, and/or motor problems, such as paralysis), or meningoencephalitis (inflammation of both the brain and meninges). LCMV has actually likewise been known to cause acute hydrocephalus (increased fluid on the brain), which typically requires surgical shunting to eliminate increased intracranial pressure. In uncommon instances, infection lead to myelitis (inflammation of the spine) and provides with symptoms such as muscle weak point, paralysis, or modifications in body experience. An association between LCMV infection and myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscles) has been suggested. Previous observations reveal that the majority of patients who establish aseptic meningitis or encephalitis due to LCMV survive. No chronic infection has been explained in people, and after the acute stage of disease, the virus is cleared from the body. However, as in all infections of the central nerve system, especially sleeping sickness, temporary or long-term neurological damage is possible. Nerve deafness and arthritis have actually been reported.
Women who end up being infected with LCMV during pregnancy may pass the infection on to the fetus. Infections happening during the first trimester may lead to fetal death and pregnancy termination, while in the second and 3rd trimesters, abnormality can establish. Babies infected In utero can have many serious and permanent birth defects, consisting of vision issues, mental retardation, and hydrocephaly (water on the brain). Pregnant women might recall a flu-like illness during pregnancy, or may not recall any disease.
LCM is typically not fatal. In basic, mortality is less than 1%.
Treatment and Prevention
Most people recuperate on their own and do not need treatment. Those who have severe symptoms have been treated with anti-inflammatory medication and helpful measures. There is no specific antiviral medication that has been shown to work against LCMV.
LCMV can be prevented by avoiding contact with house mice and taking safety measures when managing pet rodents (i.e. mice, hamsters, or guinea pigs.)
If you have a rodent infestation in and around your home, take the following steps to minimize the risk of LCMV infection:
- Seal up rodent entry holes or gaps with steel wool or caulk.
- Trap rats and mice by utilizing a proper breeze trap.
- Clean up rodent food sources and nesting sites and take safety measures when cleaning rodent-infected areas.
If you have an animal rodent, wash your hands with soap and water (or waterless alcohol-based hand rub when soap is not available and hands are not unclean) after dealing with rodents or their cages and bedding.
What are the suggestions for cleaning a rodent-infested area?
- Be sure the area is well aerated (open windows and doors if possible).
- Put on gloves.
- Do not stimulate dust by vacuuming, sweeping or any other ways.
- Thoroughly wet infected areas with bleach solution or home disinfectant (bleach solution: mix 1 and 1/2 cups of household bleach in 1 gallon of water).
- As soon as whatever is wet, polluted products might be gotten with a wet towel and after that mop or sponge the area with bleach solution or household disinfectant.
- Spray dead rodents with disinfectant and then double-bag it in addition to all cleaning up materials and toss bag out in trash.
- Remove gloves and clean hands with soap and water.