According to a report published in ProMED Mail, officials say 12-year old boy died of furious rabies during treatment at Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital in Kathmandu, Nepal.
The patient was bitten by an unknown stray dog (puppy) in the tip of the index finger. The wound was unnoticeable and hence the boy did not inform his parents about the incident. Signs of furious rabies appeared 20 days after the bite. He died one day after his admission to this hospital. It was the 2nd fatal case of rabies in this hospital within a week.
According to the Control of Communicable Diseases Manual, all mammals are susceptible to rabies. Raccoons, skunks, foxes, bats, dogs, coyotes and cats are the likely suspects. Other animals like otters and ferrets are also high risk. Mammals like rabbits, squirrels, rodents and opossums are rarely infected.
Rabies infected animals can appear very aggressive, attacking for no reason. Some may act very tame. They may look like they are foaming at the mouth or drooling because they cannot swallow their saliva. Sometimesthe animal may stagger (this can also be seen in distemper). Not long after this point they will die. Most animals can transmit rabies days before showing symptoms.
Initially, like in many diseases, the symptoms of rabies are non-specific; fever, headache and malaise. This may last several days. At the site of the bite, there may be some pain and discomfort. Symptomsthen progress to more severe: confusion, delirium, abnormal behavior and hallucinations. If it gets this far, the disease is nearly 100% fatal.
With the exception of Antarctica, rabies is endemic on all continents. Worldwide, it is estimated that there are more than 69,000 deaths due to rabies annually, with 95% in Africa and Asia.