Ron Smith, MD

Rabies in the News

This transmission electron microscopic (TEM) image, reveals some of the ultrastructural features exhibited by numerous bullet-shaped, rabies virus particles, as well as cellular inclusions known as Negri bodies.

Friday, 5 May 2023

Agency Issues Warning After Rabid Bat Bites Woman

According to a press release from the agency, the woman was working at a general store in the Death Valley area when she attempted to move a bat that she found on top of a garbage can that she said was "behaving strangely." The bat then bit her through the nitrile gloves she was wearing. It was subsequently taken by the NPS and the California Department of Public Health for testing, and the woman was later informed that the bat was positive for rabies.

Wednesday, 5 April 2023

Man tragically dies after being bitten by infected BAT inside bedroom

Experts also state that “this was the first recorded US case of rabies where a patient died after receiving prophylaxis treatment in a timely and appropriate manner”. The rabies virus, which is almost always fatal, if the patients are not administered medications before the emergence of symptoms, targets the central nervous system and results in inflammation of the brain as well as the spinal cords. Humans can get infected with this virus typically after coming in contact with the saliva of an infected animal. This virus is transmitted through several animals including bats, raccoons, skunks, and foxes.

Friday, 28 October 2022

Case of rabies confirmed in Paris by France’s Ministry of Agriculture

Rabies has been discovered in a dog in a Paris suburb. As detailed in a statement from France’s Ministry of Agriculture on Thursday, October 27, several people have already been bitten by it. The dog was reportedly kept in isolation from the time it showed signs of illness on October 19th until it died on October 25th. Before the dog was isolated, it had bitten several people who subsequently received preventive care. There are signs that the infected dog may have been illegally imported from Morocco said the Ministry. France has been officially free of rabies since 2001, except for the type found in bats. However, the deadly disease remains in many countries, particularly in Asia and Africa. In those nations, dogs account for the majority of cases of the disease transmitted to humans, according to the French Ministry of Agriculture.

Friday, 30 September 2022

Bat Found in a Home in Oregon Tested Positive; How To Tell if an Animal Is Rabid?

Oregon health officials remind the public to take extra care and ensure pets have completed their vaccination to protect them. More so, avoid contact with wildlife and take precautions when attempting to handle a bat by wearing heavy gloves and using a shovel.

Quick Overview

Rabies Transmission

How Is Rabies Transmitted? (CDC)

Rabies virus is transmitted through direct contact (such as through broken skin or mucous membranes in the eyes, nose, or mouth) with saliva or brain/nervous system tissue from an infected animal.

People usually get rabies from the bite of a rabid animal. It is also possible, but rare, for people to get rabies from non-bite exposures, which can include scratches, abrasions, or open wounds that are exposed to saliva or other potentially infectious material from a rabid animal. Other types of contact, such as petting a rabid animal or contact with the blood, urine or feces of a rabid animal, are not associated with risk for infection and are not considered to be exposures of concern for rabies.

Other modes of transmission—aside from bites and scratches—are uncommon. Inhalation of aerosolized rabies virus is one potential non-bite route of exposure, but except for laboratory workers, most people won’t encounter an aerosol of rabies virus. Rabies transmission through corneal and solid organ transplants have been recorded, but they are also very rare. There have only been two known solid organ donor with rabies in the United States since 2008. Many organ procurement organizations have added a screening question about rabies exposure to their procedures for evaluating the suitability of each donor.

Bite and non-bite exposures from an infected person could theoretically transmit rabies, but no such cases have been documented. Casual contact, such as touching a person with rabies or contact with non-infectious fluid or tissue (urine, blood, feces), is not associated with risk for infection. Contact with someone who is receiving rabies vaccination does not constitute rabies exposure, does not pose a risk for infection, and does not require postexposure prophylaxis.

Rabies virus becomes noninfectious when it dries out and when it is exposed to sunlight. Different environmental conditions affect the rate at which the virus becomes inactive, but in general, if the material containing the virus is dry, the virus can be considered noninfectious.