By NewsDesk  @infectiousdiseasenews

The Taiwan Animal and Plant Quarantine Bureau announced this week the first positive case of yellow-throated marten rabies in the country.

yellow throated marten
Image by Andrea Bohl from Pixabay

To reduce the risk of infection, the Department of Disease Control revised the “Guidelines for the Clinical Treatment of Suspected Rabies or Lyssavirus Scratch and Bites”, adjusting the post-exposure vaccination targets, and added those who were bitten by the “yellow-throated marten”.

According to the CDC, several carnivorous wild animals’ scratch and bite cases are reported to the public each year.

There have been 8 cases so far this year, of which 3 cases were positive for rabies.

Rabies is an acute encephalomyelitis caused by the rabies virus. The rabies virus enters the human body from the saliva of an infected animal along with wounds caused by scratches and bites. The incubation period is about 1 to 3 months. The initial symptoms include fever, sore throat, and hair. Cold, anorexia, vomiting, dyspnea, cough, headache, or abnormal feeling in the bite site, excitement and fear a few days later, then paralysis, dysphagia, throat spasm, and cause hydrophobia. Mental confusion and convulsions will follow. If no medical measures are taken, patients often die due to respiratory paralysis, with a fatality rate of nearly 100%. However, if you can seek medical treatment immediately after being bitten by an animal and receive vaccination after exposure to rabies, you can reduce the risk of disease.

The Department of Disease Control once again urged that people should avoid contact with and capture wild animals, and bring home dogs, cats and other pets to vaccinate against rabies every year; if you are accidentally scratched and bitten by wild mammals, please wash the wound with soap and plenty of water for 15 minutes. After disinfection with betadine or 70% alcohol, go to the doctor as soon as possible. After the doctor assesses the risk of rabies, you should get immune globulin as soon as possible, and follow the schedule (the day of the first dose is day 0, 7 and 14 days) 4 doses of human rabies vaccine to reduce the risk of disease.