Merdeka.com – A man in Illinois, United States, who woke up with a bat biting his neck died one month later of rabies. He died after refusing to receive a vaccine to prevent the deadly disease.
The man, who is in his 80s, refused to be vaccinated after being bitten by a bat in mid-August. The bat was found to be positive for the rabies virus, the Washington Post reported last Thursday, as reported by the Al Arabiya website, Thursday (30/9).
From 99 percent of cases, pet dogs are the main cause of the rabies virus transmitted to humans. Rabies can infect wild animals as well as domestic pets. The virus is spread to humans and animals usually through a bite or wound, through saliva or saliva.
There are only one to three reported cases of human rabies in the US each year, says the Centers for Infectious Disease Prevention and Control.
The US resident in Illinois, who was not named, lived in a house that was later found to be home to a bat colony.
The Illinois Department of Public Health, which reported his death, did not reveal why the man had refused to be vaccinated.
The WHO says washing hands with soap and water after coming into contact with an animal suspected of having rabies can save human lives.
Every year more than 29 million people worldwide receive the rabies vaccine. This figure is estimated to be able to prevent hundreds of thousands of deaths from rabies every year, the WHO said.
The incubation period for the rabies virus is usually 2-3 months but varies from 1 week to 1 year, depending on a number of factors such as where the virus came from and the amount of virus that entered the body. Early symptoms of rabies include fever, body aches and a tingling feeling, such as being pricked, or feeling a burning sensation (paraesthesia) at the site of the bite. When the virus spreads to the central nervous system, deadly inflammation occurs in the brain and spinal cord.
There are two types of rabies, ‘vicious rabies’ which shows symptoms of hyperactivity, overexcitement, hydrophobia (fear of water) and sometimes aerophobia (fear of cold air).
Death occurred within days of heart failure.
Paralysis due to rabies accounts for about 20 percent of the total cases in humans.
Anyone who is bitten by a rabid animal should seek treatment immediately.
While most bats aren’t mad, the WHO says it’s important to know if an animal has been in contact with another animal with rabies.
“If you don’t get prevention and you develop symptoms of rabies, no treatment is really going to save your life,” said Connie Austin, a veterinarian at the Illinois Community Health Center. [pan]