A Warning for Rodent Owners: Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus (LCMV) - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-21-2005, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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A Warning for Rodent Owners: Lymphocytic Choriomeningitis Virus (LCMV)

In May of this year, four organ recipients, all from the same donor. died. The Center for Disease Control in Atlanta later determined that they all died of lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) that came from a pet hamster owned by the donor.

Subsequently, they found that large numbers of infected animals came from one particular supplier ..MidSouth Distributors of Ohio. Infected animals could have been shipped to the Norheast and Midwest states as early as February of this year. These infected animals could have spread LCMV to other animals at the stores to which they were sent ...as well as store staff and any buyers.

While it (LCMV) may have little or no effect on a healthy human.there are some sobering facts concering LCMV. First, there is no reliable test for it. Secondly, for pregnant women and the immune suppressed (HIV, organ recipients, etc) it can have devastating effects:
Quote:
Originally Posted by CDC website
LCMV infection in humans with normal immune systems usually causes either asymptomatic or mild, self-limited illness. Aseptic meningitis also can occur in some patients, but the infection is rarely fatal (2). However, LCMV infection during the first or second trimester of pregnancy can cause severe illness or developmental defects in the fetus, including hydrocephalus, psychomotor retardation, blindness, and fetal death (3). The frequency with which developmental defects occur after in utero LCMV infection is not known. In addition, LCMV can be a serious infection in persons with impaired immune systems.
The entire article is at: CDC/MMWR Article on LCMV Associated With Pet Rodents

If you live in the midwest or the northeast, and have acquired a new rodent (particulary a mouse, guinea pig or hamster) from a pet store in the last year, I would at least read the whole article, and then think twice about exposure to any pregnant women or immune suppressed individuals.

Just something to think about...

Bob



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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2005, 02:40 AM
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Thanks for the link. The article doesn't mention if there are any signs of LCMV you might see in infected rodents? Or if it's completely asymptomatic?


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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2005, 05:25 AM Thread Starter
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I spoke with a zoo vet and a small animal vet. As far as they knew, it is probably asymptomatic. None of the articles I've read have spoken of overt symptoms in the rodents themselves.There may be minor signs, but not any you'd really notice.

Bob



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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-26-2005, 02:52 PM
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The virus is only in Usa or what?I'm cofsed about where it is.I live in canada and I'm afraid that my Degu might get it.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-26-2005, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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It is not found only in the USA, as far as I know.

If your Degu doesn't have it, it is very unlikely that they will contract it without exposure to an animal the has it.

bob



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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-26-2005, 07:33 PM
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Well tuttle was a gift.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-27-2005, 12:48 AM
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From what I understand, an animal can have it, and be okay. It only affects people with weaken immune systems, such as someone who just received an organ. There's no way to test for it while the animal is still alive.

Jenny, Zookeeper Extraordinare

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