Warning on lyssavirus risk from bat bites

The eight-year-old boy was bitten during a family holiday in Queensland in December last year. He didn’t tell his parents and three weeks later began to experience convulsions, severe abdominal pain, fever and intermittent periods of lucidity.

Lyssavirus was diagnosed on day 10 of his hospital admission. However, his neurological condition deteriorated and he fell into a coma. Amantadine treatment was unsuccessful and he died on 22 February.

Australian bat lyssavirus was first identified in 1996. There have been two other cases, both