Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS)
Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) was first reported in the United States in the Southwest in 1993. The Sin Nombre virus is the main cause of HPS reported in the United States, but other hantaviruses cause similar illnesses in other countries. In the United States, the deer mouse is the main reservoir of the virus. Other wild rodents can also be carriers. Infected rodents shed the virus in their urine, saliva, and droppings but do not show any signs of illness. Illness in humans results from inhalation of aerosolized virus-containing rodent excreta. The disease is not spread person-to-person.
Resources for the general public
Resources for health care professionals
- Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome is a reportable condition in King County: See disease reporting requirements
- Hantavirus clinical information, CDC
Hantavirus in King County
Purpose of surveillance:
- To facilitate diagnostic testing of suspected cases
- To identify sources of infection
- To facilitate environmental cleanup of rodent-infested areas where cases have occurred
No cases of hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS) were reported in 2015.
Since 1997, four cases of HPS have been reported in King County; three cases occurred in adult males and one in an adult female. Three cases were most likely exposed in Eastern or Central Washington and one in Idaho. The last fatal case occurred in 1997.