40 Students Fall Ill At George Mason University, Viral Gastroenteritis Likely Culprit
FAIRFAX, Va. (CBSDC/AP) — 40 students staying at George Mason University became sick with gastrointestinal symptoms this week and authorities believe it was likely the result of an outbreak of viral gastroenteritis.
The Fairfax County Health Department said Thursday that it was investigating an outbreak that occurred among students participating in a program sponsored by the Congressional Award Foundation.
About 40 of the 80 students became ill. Physician Peter Troell (TROLL) with the county health department said the students likely contracted viral gastroenteritis, which causes vomiting and diarrhea. The disease is sometimes referred to as “stomach flu” even though it is not caused by influenza viruses. Germs like norovirus and rotavirus can sometimes be responsible for outbreaks of gastroenteritis.
Troell said testing is ongoing to see if a specific virus is responsible for the outbreak.
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