Living With Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome
About 4 out of 10 patients with HPS do not survive their illness. However, patients who recover usually do so rapidly. Supportive treatment during the severe stages of illness, allows the body and its organs to rest and defend themselves as the viral illness runs its course and resolves completely.
What to Expect
With treatment, cases of HPS can resolve completely, and patients can return to normal life and functioning. There are no reports of chronic infection with hantavirus, there seem to be no long-term effects of having suffered from HPS.
Managing and Preventing HPS
The best treatment is prevention. With HPS, prevention is directed toward minimizing rodent exposure and early identification of any exposed/infected patients.
- Seal up (using cement or other patching material) holes or cracks through which rodents may gain entry to your home or work environment. Remember, they can get through opening that are much smaller than you may think!
- Identify potential nesting sites, and clean up debris, clear bushes and trap rodents to remove them.
- Open and aerate well any chronically closed rodent-infested spaces before entering them.
- Heavily infested areas should be brought to the attention of the relevant state or federal health officials prior to cleaning campaigns.
The Lung Association recommends patients and caregivers join our Living with Lung Disease Support Community to connect with others facing this disease. You can also call the Lung Association's Lung HelpLine at 1-800-LUNGUSA to talk to a trained respiratory professional who can help answer your questions and connect you with additional support.
The following are some resources you can access to gain more information about this disease:
This content was developed in partnership with the CHEST Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the American College of Chest Physicians.