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Yesterday at my children's school there was a raccoon on the…

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Yesterday at my children's school...
Yesterday at my children's school there was a raccoon on the playground during the after school program. The teachers rushed the kids inside and my son said the raccoon ran from people. Didn't attack. He also said his friend said the raccoon soon ran away from the playground. The kids were allowed to come back outside around 30 minutes approximately (this was kid reported). None of my children came into contact with the raccoon. No one was bitten, scratched, licked, touched by the raccoon.My question is how concerned should I be for rabies transmission if my children came into contact with salvia from the raccoon on the playground after it has left. It would be secondary contact,not direct contact. The CDC said that salvia into a mucus membrane can cause rabies but my understanding is that it has to be direct contact and not secondary because of how unstable the virus is and the vector has to be living not the ground, a slide etc. please help
Submitted: 8 months ago.Category: Pediatrics
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Answered in 57 minutes by:
11/18/2017
Pediatrician: Dr. Muneeb Ali, Doctor replied 8 months ago
Dr. Muneeb Ali
Category: Pediatrics
Satisfied Customers: 9,960
Experience: MBBS, MD, MCCM. Currently working in Critical Care Medicine with 10 year experience in Medicine
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Hi,
Welcome to JA and thanks for this question. Im sorry to hear about the danger your children were in but i am glad that none of the children were hurt. Regarding your question, you are correct, the danger lies when a person comes into DIRECT contact with the infected saliva. It is HIGHLY UNLIKELY that indirect contact with the saliva will result in transmission of the rabies virus. The virus has a short life outside the body as it is susceptible to sunlight, ultraviolet light and would die as soon as the saliva dries up.

The information on CDC is absolutely correct, the virus needs to come into contact directly from the animal into the person, this means either the saliva has to come into contact with the mucus membranes, such as when a dog licks someones mouth etc OR the person has to be bitten with the saliva getting into the body. Simply touching the saliva itself would also NOT result in transmission of the virus.

So in short i believe your children are absolutely safe here and you dont need to be worried here. Your research is 100% correct and your children are safe.

Do you have any more questions?

Please leave a POSITIVE rating by clicking on the stars above, until you do i am not compensated for my time. You can continue to ask follow-up questions even after the POSITIVE rating. You can also ask questions from me directly by going on the link below,

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Thank you for your response. I apologize it has taken me so long to respond. Just to confirm that playing on a playground where a raccoon was spotted is not a worry for transmission of rabies. My son did say he sat on the sidewalk where the raccoon ran. He said he did not feel anything wet. I just want to confirm that touching these areas where the animal might have been or was is not a concern. My son has a tendency to bite on his thumb and said he may have done that well after the animal was seen but probably didn't wash his hands. My husband says that if rabies was that easy to transmit more people would get it. Please advise. The kids didn't put hand sanitizer in until they got home - I have a newborn. Please help this is very stressful. Should we contact animal control since the animal was out during the day?
Pediatrician: Dr. Muneeb Ali, Doctor replied 8 months ago

Your husband is absolutely right, rabies is not this easy to transmit and if it was there would have a much larger group of people who are infected on a daily basis. So in this situation your son is absolutely safe and even if he touched the saliva it would NOT result in transmission of the virus. You should animal control so that they can take care of the racoon and prevent him from biting anyone else but your son is safe here.

Do you have any more questions?

Please leave a POSITIVE rating by clicking on the stars above, until you do i am not compensated for my time. You can continue to ask follow-up questions even after the POSITIVE rating. You can also ask questions from me directly by going on the link below,

http://www.justanswer.com/medical/expert-dr-muneeb-ali/

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Pediatrician: Dr. Yogindra Vasavada, Pediatrician replied 8 months ago
Dr. Yogindra Vasavada
Dr. Yogindra Vasavada, Pediatrician
Category: Pediatrics
Satisfied Customers: 3,385
Experience: M.D.(ped) passed at first attempt, in practice continuously for last 37 years. Certi. in Comp
Verified

Hi, Transmission of Rabies is mostly after a bite of infected animal. Virus needs to enter through a cut so all kids are safe as no hand to mouth transmission is possible, virus dies instantly outside animal body.

No vaccination is required at all. Please remove any fear and rest assured. Your new-born is very much safe.

Good luck.

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