An infant and a teen in Brooklyn were infected by a deadly and rare disease called raccoon roundworm. The cause of this disease is contact with the feces of raccoon, and it can result in perennial nerve damage and death. There are less than 30 cases of this disease in the entire US, and the symptoms usually show in about two to four weeks after contraction. The symptoms include loss of muscle control and coordination, nausea, and blindness.
The Brooklyn infant who contracted raccoon roundworm started experiencing spinal problems and seizures in October last year. Later on, the baby was hospitalized because of brain damage. In January this year, a teenager in Brooklyn was infected with the disease and became blind in the right eye. It is known that children who have developmental problems are more susceptible to the disease.
Sally Slavinski, a representative from a department of health that is concerned with the transmission of diseases from animals to human beings, advised parents to keep watch on their children when they are in places that have a raccoon population, so as to prevent contact with raccoon feces.
If you need to get rid of raccoons around your home, you can contact pest control experts in NY, NYC, and NJ.
For NJ and NYC residents concerned about their families and pets getting rabies by wildlife, especially raccoons, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service signed the first North American Rabies Management Plan with Canada and Mexico. The goal is to improve the cooperation and the communication among the three nations.
In the United States an oral rabies vaccination program is utilized to prevent rabies spreading in wildlife including raccoons, and coyotes. NJ and NYC residents should be aware that rabies from wild animals can be transmitted to dogs and other types of pets. Raccoons, skunks and other wildlife often live in urban settings such as NYC. Urban raccoons often live in sewer systems.
CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberding mentioned that although tremendous improvements have been made in combating rabies, especially canine rabies, it’s still found in wildlife which puts people at risk.
Canine to canine rabies has been almost eliminated in the United States. Human cases of rabies mostly happens due to exposure to wildlife inflicted with rabies.
NJ and NYC residents that are having problems with raccoons and other wildlife can contact a NJ, NYC wild animal control professional.