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Infectious Diseases

Stomach viruses

03/11/2008

Question:

I dont see my topic, but my question is can you get the stomach virus again right after you`ve had it? My whole family has just gotten over the stomach virus, and now my nephew has it and I want to know can I get it again? My family and I had diarrhea and omiting all over the carpet and bed and I want to know how can we quarantine the house so no one else gets it, because my sister does hair sometimes.

Answer:

Because there are many, many different types of viruses, whenever you are exposed to a virus that you don't have immunity to, you can get infected with it, even if you have recently been infected with a different virus. But, if you are exposed to the same virus, you probably already have immunity to it because you were sick before and have gotten over it. So you really can't assume that you'll get sick. Often it takes a few weeks for a virus to work its way through a family.

Viruses on surfaces are fairly easy to kill with standard cleaning agents, but it sounds like you and your sister have a big clean job up on your hands. Best of luck to you.

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Response by:

Lisa A Haglund, MD Lisa A Haglund, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati