Noroviruses – Most Frequent Cause of Acute Gastroenteritis
DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2010.0254german translation / full article
Abstract: The norovirus infection is the most frequent cause of acute gastroenteritis in Europe with a seasonal peak between November and March. The virus is exceptionally resistant to environmental impacts and is genetically variable. It is transmitted via contaminated food, fecal-oral smear or in droplets while vomiting. The disease lasts 1–3 days and is self-limiting. Elderly persons and young children are particularly vulnerable. As a consequence of the high contagiousness a rapid spread occurs, resulting in a considerable impairment of the service in practices, hospitals, schools and nursing homes. Only the recognition of the disease in a very early stage and appropriate isolation and hygiene activities can limit the spread of this infection.