Rabies: Definition, stages, Symptoms, Treatment And Prevention


What is Rabies?

Rabies is a viral disease that mainly spreads through a bite from an infected pet. It is an RNA virus of the rhabdovirus species. Without quick treatment, it is ordinarily a fatal disease caused by the bite of a rabid dog.

The virus can affect the body in one of two modes:

  • It enters the Peripheral Nervous System straight and migrates to the brain.
  • It replicates within muscle tissue, where it is harmless from the host’s immune system. From here, it invades the nervous system throughout the neuromuscular junctions.

Once inside the nervous system, the virus creates severe inflammation of the brain. Coma and death promptly follow.

Stages Of Rabies

Based on the nature and severity of the symptoms that occur in an infected person, rabies is categorized into the subsequent stages:

1) Incubation

The incubation period includes the initial few weeks after the virus has invaded the body. During this time, though the virus has invaded the body, there are no clear symptoms. The incubation period can be of differing duration in different people. In some, it can remain for a short time duration whereas in others it may last as prolonged as 12 weeks.

2) Prodromal

The second stage remains for 3 to 10 days. This is the stage when the initial signs and symptoms of the infection begin to develop. However, these initial symptoms are largely generalized and can be simply confused with any other mild illness or they could be easily ignored.

3) Acute Neurologic Period

This is the stage when the usual tell-tale signs of rabies infection start to reveal, and the disease is at its worst. At this stage, pronounced signs specific to this disease begin to manifest as a result of severe impairment of the nervous system.

4) Final stage

In this stage, a person ordinarily goes into a coma and dies.


The period within the bite and the start of the symptom is called the incubation period. It usually needs four to 12 weeks for a person to develop rabies signs once they are contaminated. However, incubation periods can also vary from a few times to six years.

The beginning onset of rabies starts with flu-like symptoms that involve fever, muscle weakness, tingling.

You may also feel burning at the wound site. As the virus remains to attack the central nervous system as there are two different types of illness that can develop.

Furious Rabies

Infected people who progress furious rabies will be hyperactive and impulsive and may display irregular behaviour in which the symptoms include:

  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • Excess salivation
  • Problem swallowing
  • Agitation
  • Fear of water

Paralytic Rabies

These forms of rabies take lengthy to set in, but the results are just as severe. Infected people gradually become paralyzed, will ultimately slip into a coma and die. 30% of rabies incidents are paralytic.

Can Rabies Be Cured?

Subsequent exposure to the rabies virus, you can have a series of vaccinations to prevent an infection from setting in. Rabies immunoglobulin, which gives you an important dose of rabies antibodies to combat the infection, helps to limit the virus from getting a foothold. Then, getting the rabies vaccine is the solution to avoiding the disease. The rabies vaccine is given in a set of five shots over 14 days.

Animal control will apparently try to find the animal that bit you so that it can be examined for rabies. If the animal is not rabid, you can withdraw the large round of rabies shots. However, if the animal can not be found, the most reliable course of action is to take defensive shots.

Getting a rabies treatment as soon as possible after an animal bite is the most reliable way to prevent the disease. Doctors will manage your admiration by washing it for at least 15 minutes with soap and water, detergent. Then they will provide you with the rabies immunoglobulin and you will beginthe round of injection for the rabies vaccine. This rule is known as Post-exposureProphylaxis.

How To Prevent Rabies?

Rabies is a preventable infection. There are unusual simple measures you can take to support keep you from catching rabies:

  • Get rabies shots before travelling to developing countries, working usually closely with animals or working in a lab working the rabies virus.
  • Vaccinate your pets
  • Keep your pets from walking outside
  • Report stray animals to animals control
  • Avoid touch with wild animals
  • Prevent bats from entering living areas or other structures near your home.

You should record any signs of an infected animal to your local animal control or health agencies.