First it was the flu, and now a new strain of stomach bug is sweeping the globe and the United States.
It’s a type of norovirus. It’s highly contagious and since September there have been more than 140 outbreaks in the U.S.
They’re calling it the “Sydney Strain” because it was identified last year in Australia. Scientists don’t think it’s dangerous, but it could be for people who are weak to begin with.
What kind of symptoms should we be on the look out for?
It’s your typical stomach virus, so it’s going to be vomiting and diarrhea for a few days with nausea. The thing about this virus is that it’s highly contagious, so it hits people very quickly.
You feel fine one minute and within several hours you’re suddenly overwhelmed with vomiting and diarrhea.
It’s usually spread by infected food handlers who don’t wash their hands well after using the bathroom. But it can also spread in the air as droplets when someone vomits.
What’s the treatment?
It’s supportive, which means you have to ride it out and try to stay hydrated if you can. Really sick people who are already weak and have medical problems with probably need to be hospitalized for IV therapy.