Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Virus Facts

Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Virus Facts
The Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus is a zoonotic (spreads to humans via animals or insects) virus that is spread to humans mainly via ticks and livestock. When animals become infected they usually do not have clinical disease but when humans become infected it can result in severe disease and carries a mortality rate between 10% and 40%. Once infected, a person will develop flu-like symptoms, following an incubation period of usually 5 to 6 days. In as many as 75% of cases the signs of hemorrhagic fever appear. While approximately 70% of those with symptoms will recover by about the 10th day, roughly 30% of infected people will die, but this can be as high as 40%.
Interesting Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever Virus Facts:
Most cases of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever are spread to humans from either ticks or from livestock.
In some cases Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus is transmitted from person to person. This usually occurs because of contact with an infected person's organs, bodily fluids, or other secretions.
Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever is endemic in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and in the Balkans.
There is no vaccine available for animals or for humans to prevent infection with Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever.
Both wild and domestic animals can be infected with CCHF including goats, sheep and ostriches. Most birds have a natural resistance to CCHF.
CCHF can also be spread to humans when they come into contact with an infected animal during or after it has been slaughtered.
Once an animal has been bit by an infected tick, CCHF virus will remain in its bloodstream for up to a week.
The tick species most commonly infected with CCHF is the Hyalomma.
Transmission of the CCHF virus can occur in hospitals when equipment isn't properly sterilized.
People that work in the livestock industry where CCHF virus is endemic are at increased risk of infection, as well as veterinarians, and agricultural employees.
The incubation period of CCHF is usually roughly 5 to 6 days but in some cases it can last as long as 9 days. One case was documented at 13 days.
When symptoms appear following infection and the incubation period, they are usually rapid.
Symptoms of infection with CCHF virus include fever, muscle aches, neck pain, neck stiffness, headaches, back pain, sensitivity to light, and sore eyes. Some people also experience nausea and vomiting, pain in the abdomen, diarrhea, sore throat, mood swings, and even confusion.
After roughly 2 to 4 days following the onset of symptoms of CCHF a person may experience sleepiness, depression, liver enlargement, and pain in the upper right abdomen.
Other symptoms that appear as the infection progresses include a fast heart rate, enlarged lymph nodes, a rash, hepatitis, kidney failure, liver failure, or pulmonary failure.
Approximately 30% of those infected with the CCHF virus will die during the second week. Those who recover tend to start doing so on about the 9th day after symptoms first appeared.
The main approach to treatment is managing the symptoms as they appear.

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