How long are you contagious after a stomach virus? Can someone get the same virus twice? Do viruses mutate?

Okay- so my husband brought a "bug" home from work where other people were sick. He was nauseated but never threw up or had diarhea, just couldn't eat and was very drowsy. My daughter, 18 mos old, then got sick 24 hours later, had diarhea and threw up three times. 24 hours later, (like clock work) I got sick but it hit me the worst. Vomited 7 or 8 times, a little diarhea, still in bed with muscle aches 24 hours later. Anyways, is it possible that the virus mutated to cause different symptoms, or does it just hit people differently? Also, I am worried about my family getting sick from it (again.) Is that possible to give the virus to my child? I don't know if her little body could handle what I just went through... I thought I remembered reading somewhere that you can't catch the same bug twice? Any info is appreciated!

2 Answers

  • David
    Lv 6
    6 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    You are still infectious after the symptoms have gone, the medical advice is to wait another 48 hours before going out or returning to work.

    The virus does mutate, but the main cause of different symptoms is how a persons immune system reacts. About 20% of Europeans are thought to be resistant to it.

    Yes with norovirus you get no lasting immunity so you can get it again.

    Two things are happening, the virus mutates so your immune system does not recognize it and for this virus your immune memory only lasts about three months at best.

    A study was done in which it was shown that samples taken after norovirus infection could re infect people(medical students) after about three months.

    The virus can remain infectious on some surfaces for up to two weeks.

    After someone has been sick with norovirus a 'deep clean' is recommended to remove and destroy any contamination. Washing down surfaces with diluted bleach should be enough.

    When there have been outbreaks on cruise ships they have had to employ specialist cleaners.

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  • 4 years ago

    Yes it's going around again this year, as it did last year.... I had it last year, got it the day after an 8 hour flight very full of people. My other half (who also flew) also got sick (different meal by the way). That's the nature of a virus, it's contagious. Usually there's an incubation period before you get symptoms (sick) but with this one, it's pretty fast. I know it's going around the US, UK, and Belgium at this time. Even a microbioligist friend who has been exposed to many gross stuff under the microscope has caught it. Get well soon to your mother.

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