The management and prevention of rabies in humans is very important. A person gets infected with rabies when he/she is bitten by a dog, skunk, raccoon, bat or fox that is infected with the virus. This virus is lethal and enters the human body via broken skin. Once in the body, it travels straight into the brain which as a result causes inflammation. Rabies in humans can lead to death, especially in children. It is for this reason that proper care of the victim should be top priority. In the US and UK, the disease has been successfully controlled through vaccination of dogs. However, the other wild animals still raise concerns of the disease.
Symptoms of Rabies
The symptoms of rabies in humans may take up-to 10 days to show. In rare cases, it has been reported that the signs may take up-to 7 years. To manage the condition successfully, be on the lookout for:
· Numbness in the affected area
· Difficulty in swallowing
· Excruciating pain
· Muscle spasm
Testing for Rabies in Humans
The first thing that you will be required to do is to gather adequate info on the animal that bit you. Then, contact the animal control department in your area so that the animal can be captured and observed. If the animal shows signs of rabies, it is highly likely that you have been infected as well. The doctor will then examine the bite wound, clean it and finally treat it as required. Since the virus can be detected in the saliva, spinal fluid and skin, doctors will use either one to conduct more comprehensive tests.
Treatment of Rabies
After you have been bitten, use water and soap to clean the affected area. Seek medical assistance immediately. A vaccine for preventing rabies in humans will be administered over a period of 28 days. In total, you will receive 5 doses. When exposed to wild animals that carry the rabies virus, even if you were not bitten, it is advisable to visit your doctor.
Outlook of the Condition
The rabies virus can be contained if the vaccine is given immediately the bite occurs. This is actually why many such cases have been effectively controlled in the United States in recent past. Alternatively, chances of surviving after the symptoms begin to show are relatively low. If a person who has been bitten by an infected animal does not get the vaccine in time, respiratory failure that normally leads to death takes place within a week. Another possible complication of rabies in humans when the condition is left untreated is coma.
Prevention of Rabies
Prevention is usually better than cure which is why you need to be vigilant to avoid such an unfortunate event from occurring. Always do the following:
· Keep away from animals that you are unfamiliar with.
· Get the vaccine in case your work entails contact with such animals or you usually go to countries where cases of rabies in humans are high.
· Take your pet dog to the vet to receive appropriate inoculation against the virus.