Norovirus outbreak reported in US: What you need to know | World News - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Norovirus outbreak reported in US: What you need to know about transmission and symptoms

By | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
Feb 23, 2024 06:34 PM IST

Norovirus causes around 19 to 21 million illnesses annually in the US, with the highest occurrence typically observed from November to April.

A stomach virus, commonly referred to as the 'norovirus,' is currently spreading throughout the northeastern region of the United States, as per data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the nation's public health agency.

Each year, there are around 109,000 hospitalisations and 900 deaths attributed to norovirus, primarily affecting older adults. (Representational Image)
Each year, there are around 109,000 hospitalisations and 900 deaths attributed to norovirus, primarily affecting older adults. (Representational Image)

According to CDC data cited by news portal The Hill, the three-week average of positive tests for norovirus in the region has reached 13.9% in recent weeks and has remained above a 10% positive rate since mid-December 2023.

HT launches Crick-it, a one stop destination to catch Cricket, anytime, anywhere. Explore now!

Norovirus is identified as the primary cause of vomiting, diarrhoea, and foodborne illness in the US, as stated by the CDC. The illness can affect individuals of all age groups, and it spreads “very easily and quickly”.

As per the report, the agency recommends thorough handwashing with soap and water, sanitising surfaces with bleach, and using hot water to launder clothes to prevent the transmission of norovirus.

Quoting the CDC's advisory, The Hill mentioned that individuals may contract norovirus multiple times throughout their lives due to the existence of various virus strains. "One type of norovirus may not protect you against other types," the advisory said.

Based on CDC data, norovirus causes around 19 to 21 million illnesses annually in the US, with the highest occurrence typically observed from November to April. Each year, there are around 109,000 hospitalisations and 900 deaths attributed to norovirus, primarily affecting older adults.

Norovirus

Norovirus, a highly contagious virus, induces symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhoea. Anyone can contract norovirus and fall ill. While sometimes referred to as "stomach flu" or "stomach bug," norovirus illness is distinct from influenza, caused by the influenza virus.

It is a prevalent virus unrelated to the flu. Norovirus stands as the primary culprit behind vomiting, diarrhoea, and foodborne illnesses.

Symptoms of norovirus

-Norovirus triggers inflammation in the stomach or intestines, a condition known as acute gastroenteritis.

-Symptoms of norovirus typically manifest 12 to 48 hours after exposure, as per CDC guidelines. While most individuals recover from norovirus illness within one to three days, they remain contagious for a few days afterwards.

-Norovirus infection can induce severe symptoms, including frequent vomiting or diarrhoea. Such symptoms can result in dehydration, particularly among young children, older adults, and individuals with underlying health conditions. Dehydrated children may exhibit signs such as reduced tear production, unusual sleepiness, or irritability.

How does this virus spread?

-Norovirus transmission can occur through accidental ingestion of tiny particles of faeces (stool) or vomit from an individual infected with the virus.

-Direct contact with an individual infected with norovirus, such as through caregiving, sharing food or utensils, or consuming food prepared by them, can facilitate transmission.

-Consumption of food or beverages contaminated with norovirus is another route of transmission.

-Contacting surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus and subsequently putting unwashed hands in one's mouth can also lead to infection.

Discover the pivotal moments that shaped India's electoral journey on the Eras section of our exclusive Elections product. Access all content absolutely free on the HT App. Download now!

Get Latest World News, along with Latest News from India at Hindustan Times.
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Tuesday, April 23, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On