RAT RELATED HEALTH HAZARDS & DISEASES
Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS):
Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) is a deadly disease transmitted by infected rodents through urine, droppings, or saliva. Humans can contract the disease when they breathe in aerosolized virus. HPS was first recognized in 1993 and has since been identified throughout the United States. Although rare, HPS is potentially deadly. Rodent control in and around the home remains the primary strategy for preventing hantavirus infection.
||Here is information on some of the diseases caused by rats, as gathered from the Center For Disease Control & Prevention http://www.cdc.gov|
Murine typhus (caused by infection with R. typhi) occurs worldwide and is transmitted to humans by rat fleas. Flea-infested rats can be found throughout the year in humid tropical environments, but in temperate regions are most common during the warm summer months. Travelers who visit in rat-infested buildings and homes, especially in harbor or riverine environments, can be at risk for exposure to the agent of murine typhus.
Rat-bite fever (RBF):
Rat-bite fever (RBF) is a systemic bacterial illness caused by Streptobacillus moniliformis that can be acquired through the bite or scratch of a rodent or the ingestion of food or water contaminated with rat feces.
Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium:
As its name suggests, it causes a typhoid-like disease in mice. In humans S. Typhimurium does not cause as severe disease as S. Typhi, and is not normally fatal. The disease is characterized by diarrhea, abdominal cramps, vomiting and nausea, and generally lasts up to 7 days. Unfortunately, in immunocompromized people, that is the elderly, young, or people with depressed immune systems, Salmonella infections are often fatal if they are not treated with antibiotics.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that affects humans and animals. It is caused by bacteria of the genus Leptospira. In humans it causes a wide range of symptoms, and some infected persons may have no symptoms at all. Symptoms of leptospirosis include high fever, severe headache, chills, muscle aches, and vomiting, and may include jaundice (yellow skin and eyes), red eyes, abdominal pain, diarrhea, or a rash. If the disease is not treated, the patient could develop kidney damage, meningitis (inflammation of the membrane around the brain and spinal cord), liver failure, and respiratory distress. In rare cases death occurs.
Eosinophilic meningitis is an infection of the brain occurring in association with an increase in the number of eosinophils,
white blood cells that are associated with infection with worms that penetrate into the body. The organism most commonly
causing eosinophilic meningitis is a rat lung worm called angiostrongylus cantonensis.
For identification purposes, here are some photographs of rat poop, which can contain many of the diseases discussed above. If you want to prevent rat diseases for
yourself and your pets, you may want to consider attic decontamination to remove the pathogens and health risk.
In addition, if you have a rat problem in your house that you want to solve, it is not always easily done. The key is to find out how the rats are getting inside your house, and to seal those holes shut. Then you must trap in exactly the correct manner. This
is the only approach that will ensure complete and permanent removal or rats. Read more about it on my get rid of rats page.
If you need rat or wildlife control services in your hometown, try these service areas:
Los Angeles |
San Diego |
Washington DC |
Fort Lauderdale |
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