A municipal official in Epuyén in Chubut became the second death due to hantavirus pulmonary syndrome in Patagonia province after the death of a 14-year-old teenager, said yesterday the deputy director of the Esquel program area of the local Ministry of Health . Jorge Elías.
The man who died yesterday and was admitted to intensive care was one of five positive cases of hantavirus confirmed by the National Institute of Infectious Diseases (INEI) Carlos Malbrán, where the samples are sent.
"It is one of five confirmed cases of hantavirus that was in critical condition, 61 years old, from Epuyén, who died at 4:30 am," Elias told a news conference.
The mayor of Epuyén, Antonio Reatro, declared mourning and holidays in the municipality. The rest of the complex picture is that of a 15-year-old boy, who also remains in intensive treatment, but in clear recovery, while the other patients were discharged, according to hospital sources consulted by Telam. Meanwhile, Malbrán's results are expected for three new cases reported as "suspects."
"The epidemiological research tasks remain in the field," said Elías, who confirmed that the infection occurred in a common place, as Telam had already reported.
Hantavirus cases "occurred in an event room where a birthday party was held in Epuyén, but (patients) were not at the same table but in different places, so we focused our attention there," the official said.
The doctor confirmed that the zoonoses area of the Chubut Ministry of Health ordered the placement of traps to capture and analyze samples of "long-tailed" mice in the five houses of Epuyén, where the families of the confirmed hantavirus cases reside, as well as the events
Because of the commonplace where positive cases have been reported, interpersonal contagion is not ruled out, although health authorities consulted have recognized that "they are very exceptional cases that are known because the most common form of contagion is environmental."
In fact, the virus that transmits the small rodent "Oligoryzomys longicaudatus", known as the "raglan mouse" in the mountain range, a region where it proliferates especially at the time of flowering, is the most frequent form that propagates the epidemic. of cane colihue, which is his favorite food and generates an abundant flowering seed, which is very rich in nutrients.
Once in the human body, hantavirus pulmonary syndrome causes high fever, muscle aches, coughing and headache, and after several days respiratory problems worsen and develop in severe cases that, if uncontrolled, can cause death due to respiratory failure or shock when the lungs fill with fluid.
Meanwhile, Elias and Chubut's Ministry of Health's program chief, Emiliano Biondo, confirmed in the last part released today that "another suspect has interned at the Rio Senguer zonal hospital" a town in the Chubut mountain range, 360 km away. . to the south of Esquel and 750 km. to the southwest of this capital.
The part highlights that "we continue with 5 positive cases, 2 deaths due to pulmonary syndrome due to hantavirus, 2 with discharge and one in intensive care unit (ICU)."