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Spike In Illness Could Be Norovirus Outbreak

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DETROIT (WWJ) – Health officials say there’s been a reported increase in stomach illness over the past week in Michigan.

The Kent County Health Department say some of the cases appear to be norovirus, which is highly contagious and causes flu-like symptoms including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and stomach cramping.

Beaumont infectious disease expert Doctor Matthew Sims says it’s not surprising to see a spike in cases right after a long holiday weekend.

“The confined spaces and close contact with other people,” said Sims, “it’s not all that surprising that it’s not long after the holiday and after Thanksgiving when a lot of people crowded around tables and ate together

Health officials say there is no specific medication to treat Norovirus. Ill persons are urged to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and visit their doctor if they are concerned about their illness.

Sims says your best protection is hand-washing, since the virus spreads through direct contact.

He adds that staying hydrated is the most important thing, but sugary drinks should be avoided because they can make diarrhea worse.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends avoiding cooking for others and staying home if you have the Norovirus. Get more information HERE.

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