Published Date: 2005-02-05 23:50:00
Subject: PRO/EDR> Viral gastroenteritis update 2005 (05)
Archive Number: 20050205.0398
VIRAL GASTROENTERITIS UPDATE 2005 (05)
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
In this update:
 Rotavirus, community outbreak - El Salvador
 Norovirus (suspected), community outbreak - USA (Indiana)
 Norovirus, outbreak on 2 cruise ships - Uruguay (Montevideo)
Date: Tue 1 Feb 2005
From: ProMED-mail <email@example.com.
Source: MAP International online, News, Tue 1 Feb 2005 [edited]
El Salvador: Rotavirus Outbreak Affects 12 000 Children
In response to an urgent appeal from the Salvadoran American Humanitarian
Foundation (SAHF), MAP International is working to save the lives of 12 000
El Salvadoran children who are at risk due to an outbreak of rotavirus
infection that has caused the death of more than 20 children in rural areas
since the beginning of 2005. Working with SAHF, MAP International will send
12 000 treatment kits of rehydration salts to the Luis Poma Health Center
outside San Salvador this week.
According to a recent news article from Reuters, rotavirus, a leading cause
of diarrhea, kills 400 000 to 600 000 children a year, 85 percent of them
in developing nations. The highly infectious disease can cause severe
diarrhea and vomiting, leading to dehydration. Rotavirus is transmitted
through ingestion of contaminated water or food and contact with
contaminated surfaces. Oral rehydration therapy to prevent dehydration is
used in the treatment for Rotavirus.
Almost every child is exposed to rotavirus by age 5 and, according to the
Centers for Disease Control (CDC), most children in the United States are
infected by 2 years of age. Approximately 55 000 US children are
hospitalized each year with rotavirus, but most deaths occur in developing
nations where children have limited access to health care and often arrive
at the clinic too late.
Rotavirus-associated illness usually lasts only a few days for people with
healthy immune systems. In the United States and other countries with a
temperate climate, rotavirus disease has a winter seasonal pattern, with
annual epidemics occurring from November to April.
[MAP International (<http://www.map.org>) is a nonprofit Christian relief
and development organization. ProMED-mail has no financial or other
connection with MAP International. The information is provided solely in
the interests of disease control. - Mod.CP]
Date: Mon 31 Jan 2005
From: ProMED-mail <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Source: Newslink Indiana online, Mon 31 Jan 2005 [edited]
USA: Suspected Norovirus Gastroenteritis Outbreak in Indiana
Local residents who thought that they had influenza might have been wrong.
Delaware County health officials have reported that it actually could have
been norovirus infection. Noroviruses [cause] a common intestinal illness,
according to Delaware County Health Officer Dr. Donna Wilkins. Wilkins said
that [norovirus infection] is often confused with influenza.
However, symptoms of norovirus infection include vomiting and diarrhea,
[whereas influenza] symptoms more often are fever, aches, and coughing.
"People contract norovirus infection through contaminated food or water,"
said Wilkins. "It is fecal-oral transmission; so it is the person who does
not use good hygiene in the restroom and then goes and prepares food, or
handles food that somebody else eats [who transmits the virus]."
There are no medications to treat the virus, but Wilkins suggested drinking
a lot of water to stay hydrated while sick. According to Wilkins,
cleanliness is the key to prevention. "Good personal hygiene, washing your
hands very well before preparing food for someone ... that's the way to
prevent contamination and passing it from one person to another," Wilkins said.
Noroviruses are more prevalent during the winter, Wilkins added, probably
due to people having more close contact. Norovirus infection is
self-limiting and will subside on its own. It usually takes 2-3 days to
[Byline: Megan Bastien]
Date: Thu 3 Feb 2005
From: Dr. Alfonso J. Rodriguez <email@example.com>
Source: Mi Punto.com and Agence France Presse, Venezuela, Wed 2 Feb 2005
[trans Mod.JGM; edited]
Uruguay: Norovirus Outbreaks on 2 Cruise Ships Arriving in Montevideo
In all, 230 passengers on 2 luxury cruises docked this week at the port of
Montevideo suffered acute diarrheal disease, Dr. Julio Vignolo,
Vice-Director of the Public Health Ministry in Uruguay reported last
Wednesday [2 Feb 2005].
Dr. Vignolo said in an interview for "El Espectador" radio station that the
problem originated in both ships before they arrived in the port, possibly
because of contaminated food or due to improper food preparation. He added
that the condition of the majority of people affected had improved rapidly.
The Uruguayan Ministry of Health implemented epidemiological control
measures and provided care to the affected passengers, in order to prevent
transmission of the infection to people on land.