The El Salvador Health Ministry is reporting a significant increase in confirmed cases of rotavirus in 2015, compared to the same period last year, according to an elsalvador.com report (computer translated).
In the first eight weeks of 2015, 231 laboratory confirmed rotavirus cases were reported with 124 seen in the past 3 weeks. This compares to the 20 confirmed cases reported during the same period in 2014.
Those affected are primarily children under the age of five.
The Director of Health Surveillance stated that rotavirus is a cyclical disease and in 2012 for the first 8 weeks, there were 440 cases, nearly twice the detected this year.
San Salvador, Cuscatlan, Santa Ana, La Paz, San Vicente, La Libertad and San Miguel are the departments with the largest circulation of the virus in the past week.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), rotavirus disease is most common in infants and young children, but adults and olderchildren can also become infected with rotavirus. It is responsible for the death of over 600,000children annually worldwide. Once a person has been exposed to rotavirus, it takes about 2 days for symptoms to appear.
Rotavirus is shed (passed from a person’s body into the environment) in feces (stool) of infected persons. The virus spreads by the fecal-oral route; this means that the virus must be shed by an infected person and then enter a susceptible person’s mouth to cause infection.
Rotavirus vaccination is the best way to protect children against rotavirus disease. The vaccines are very effective at preventing severe rotavirus disease in infants and young children. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page