Doctors' Views


ATLANTA-In the Four Corners area of Arizona, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico in the summer of 1993, there were reported a cluster of patients that were afflicted by a deadly virus infection involving the lungs which later was identified as a hantavirus. The disease that affected these individuals has come to be known as the hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS).

Hantaviruses are a family of viruses that can lead to bleeding in the lungs (hemorrhagic fever) and kidney damage. Prior to the outbreak in the southwestern United States, they were best known to cause disease from western Europe to eastern Asia.

A recent update of hantavirus infection by authors from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was published in the medical journal HOSPITAL PRACTICE (1997;32:93-108).