Henipavirus is a virus that can cause severe respiratory illness in humans.
The virus is closely related to the Nipah virus, which causes a similar disease in pigs.
Infection with henipavirus typically begins with fever, cough, sore throat, headache, nausea and vomiting.
As the infection progresses, more symptoms may develop including difficulty breathing, chest pain, and dehydration.
For those who have recovered from an infection by henipavirus, lifelong immunity usually develops.
Henipaviruses are typically spread through contact with infected bats or other animals.
However, human-to-human transmission is also possible.
The virus can cause severe respiratory illness, and it is often fatal.
The virus can also cause skin rashes, conjunctivitis, encephalitis, and meningitis.
There is no specific treatment for henipavirus infection and no vaccine is available.
Treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and supporting the respiratory and cardiovascular systems.
Patients are typically hospitalized and placed in isolation to prevent the spread of the virus.