Dreaded norovirus stomach bug is back in Central Virginia

Posted at 7:28 PM, Dec 12, 2013
and last updated 2013-12-12 20:08:05-05

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -- The dreaded stomach bug known as the norovirus is back with a vengeance just in time for the holidays, according to the State Health Department.

Pediatrician Dr. Eric Freeman says while norovirus can have devastating effects on the entire family, the very young and elderly are most at risk.

The symptoms? Debilitating diarrhea, headaches, abdominal cramping and vomiting.

As a Mom of two-year old Jacob and a nurse - Maryellen Clair knows full well the pitfalls and dangers of norovirus.

"People come into the hospital and say they don't know how they got sick. They feel miserable," says Clair.

There are a few steps you can take to defend yourself against the highly infectious norovirus. First, wash your hands with warm, soapy water. Also, wash down household surfaces with bleach based products.

The CDC also recommends:

  •  Wash fruits and vegetables and cook seafood thoroughly
  • When you are sick, do not prepare food or care for others who are sick
  • Clean and disinfect contaminated surfaces
  • Wash laundry thoroughly

Doctor Eric Freeman can't stress enough how important it is to stay hydrated if you catch the bug. If you fail to do so you could land in the hospital.

Click here for more info about preventing norovirus, from the CDC.