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The Department of Epidemiology of the Los Santos Health Region reports two new cases of hantavirus, for a total of 36 cases so far in 2022.

Los Santos, Panama
Image/ Rgarciacq at Wikimedia commons

The new cases correspond to Hantavirus Cardiopulmonary Syndrome (SCPH) and both patients, a 33-year-old male and a 49-year-old female, come from the district of Tonosí.

To date, 21 SCPH and 15 hantavirus (FH) fevers have been reported, with no deaths. The district with the highest number of cases is Tonosí with 10 FH and 13 SCPH, followed by Los Santos with 3 FH and 4 SCPH, Las Tablas with 1 FH and 2 SCPH, and Macaracas with 1 FH and 1 SCPH.

The Minsa recommends that people keep everything clean in their homes and surroundings, as well as the collected grains (such as rice and corn), store them and seal them to avoid contact with the rodent and leave their feces and urine in the surroundings.

It is also recommended to keep the premises clean and inside (stoves and utensils) are protected to prevent the rodent from having any kind of contact.

The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) highlighted that hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome is transmitted by inhalation of saliva, urine, or excreta from infected rodents.

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Symptoms include: fatigue, fever, and muscle aches, especially in the thighs, hips, and back. Headaches, dizziness, chills, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain also occur.

Four to 10 days after the initial phase of the illness, symptoms include cough and severe dyspnea, requiring intensive care. It can cause death.