Argentine hemorrhagic fever (FHA), also known as “Junín disease” or “stubble disease”, is a viral disease that can cause death if it is not treated in time; the disease is endemic in Argentina, more specifically in the provinces of Córdoba, Buenos Aires, La Pampa, Entre Ríos and Santa Fe. Receiving the appropriate treatment on time is of vital importance and reduces the risk of mortality to 1%.
Part 1 of 3: Be Informed
Step 1. Read about the disease
If you travel to Argentina, specifically to the provinces around Buenos Aires, it is important that you have information about this disease that affects mainly people who live in rural areas.
- Argentine hemorrhagic fever is a disease that produces a viral hemorrhagic fever and is transmitted through direct contact with wild rodents or inhalation of their excretions.
- Human-to-human transmission is rare; however, the possibility exists, so it is important to take preventive measures in case of direct contact with someone infected.
- Although the disease can be contracted at any time of the year, there are important outbreaks during autumn and winter, with May being the month with the highest number of cases of infection.
- The first symptoms usually appear between 1 and 2 weeks after infection.
Step 2. Travel forewarned
If your activities force you to visit risk areas and you think you may be in danger of contracting Argentine hemorrhagic fever, it is important that you go to the doctor to find out about preventive treatments and the possibility of getting vaccinated.
- It is advisable to carry out the medical examination at least 1 or 2 months before traveling, to prevent any setback.
- Talk to your doctor about your travel itinerary and inform him in detail about the activities you will be carrying out, especially if your plan includes visits to rural areas.
Step 3. Contact your insurance
Before the trip, it is recommended that you contact a representative of your insurance company to receive the necessary information in case you require medical assistance during your stay in Argentina or expand your coverage.
We Latin Americans tend to live carefree; However, prevention is important, so it is advisable to take out travel insurance with the necessary coverage to be treated in hospitals in Argentina; These insurances are valid only during your stay in the visited country and are usually inexpensive
Part 2 of 3: Avoid Contagion
Step 1. Get vaccinated
The main measure for the prevention of Argentine hemorrhagic fever is vaccination, so it is important that you go to a health center to receive the vaccine in case your activities put you at risk of contagion or you visit high-risk areas.
- The vaccine against this disease can be given from 15 years of age.
- It is recommended that the vaccine be applied 30 days before carrying out risky activities, to increase its effectiveness.
- The vaccine is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women, as well as for people who have received another vaccine in the last month.
Step 2. Pay attention to hygiene
After vaccination, one of the most important preventive measures is hygiene, both personal and that of the place you live, so you must take extraordinary cleaning measures if you live or visit areas with high risk of contagion.
- Wash your hands carefully and change your clothes after being in an area frequented by rodents.
- Make sure you keep the rooms in your house very clean. Vinegar is an excellent natural disinfectant and can be used to clean and sanitize everything from clothing and kitchen utensils to surfaces like floors, cupboards, and even the refrigerator.
- Avoid sleeping or lying on the floor.
Step 3. Keep the surroundings of your home in good repair
It is important to prevent rodents from nesting near your house, for which it is recommended to regularly prune the surroundings and keep them free of shrubs or weeds.
- Extreme precautions in areas designated for children's play or where the family usually gathers.
- If you have small family members, be sure to keep an eye on them while they play outside and avoid putting any objects that have been in contact with the ground, as well as branches, stems or grains, in their mouths.
- Try to keep food in the refrigerator or well packaged in the pantry to avoid rodents. Never leave food scraps on the table for a long time.
- Plug any holes that rodents can sneak into your home and regularly spray or set traps.
Part 3 of 3: Act early and watch for symptoms
Step 1. Get treatment
If you have visited the contagion area and you think you have contracted the disease, it is important that you go to the emergency room and ask the doctor to carry out the relevant studies, if necessary you should receive treatment immediately.
- Time is a decisive factor in the case of this disease and receiving treatment within the first 8 days from the onset of the condition is vital.
- Treatment for FHA consists of a transfusion of immune plasma at the first symptoms.
Step 2. Make sure you have eradicated the virus
If you were in contact with the virus and have received treatment, it is important that you go to your doctor again to verify that you are safe.
Although human-to-human transmission is rare, take the opportunity to talk with your doctor and make sure you have not transmitted the virus to a family member at home
Step 3. Help others
Having suffered from FHA gives you the opportunity to help others, since the only way to cure the disease is through the transfusion of plasma from people who have received the treatment.
If you suffered from FHA and have been cured, ask your doctor about the possibility of donating your plasma
- muscle pains
- tiredness and reluctance
- joint and eye pain
- loss of appetite
- severe bleeding
- trembling of hands and tongue
- shock (shock)
- neurological disorders
- kidney disorders
- hematological abnormalities
- Argentine hemorrhagic fever is a serious disease and, if not treated in time, can lead to death within two to three weeks.
- Without treatment, mortality from AHF reaches up to 30%.
- The group most at risk is that of rural workers; the largest number of cases occur in men between the ages of 15 and 60.