Bats do have an important role as seed dispersers, but they can be potentially dangerous a carriers of zoonosa diseases or diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans or vice versa. There are a total of 137 agents of disease in bats, 68 of which can be transmitted to humans. Some of these viruses include the rabies virus, SARS virus, Nipah virus, Hendra virus, and Ebola virus. Infections of these viruses can be fatal because they can cause encephalitis or inflammation of the brain, which results in death.
Initially Pteropus, a virus spread by bats, causes fever, headache, mild cough, and disorientation. But soon it will lead to inflammation of blood vessels, arteries and the brain. Patients then lose consciousness. Seven out of ten cases lead to death. Of those who survive, one-third experience a neurological disorder and permanent paralysis. The spreader bat is unaffected by the virus it carries.
Previously, the rat was regarded as the most dangerous animal for health because it triggered a plague that wiped out half the population of Europe in the Middle Ages. However, research has found that bats more dangerous.
The researchers compared the ability of bats to host various types of viruses. There are 137 viruses that can inhabit bats and 61 of them can be transmitted to humans. One bat has an average of 1.79 inhabited viruses that can infect humans.
With all of this in mind, it I obviously important that if you are bitten by a bat that you should get checked out by a medical professional, especially if you start to experience some of the symptoms that are connected to a virus that a bat is known to carry. The sooner you get checked out, the better chance you have of addressing any transmitted viruses before worse symptoms arise.
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