Transplant patient dies of rabies contracted from donated organ

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) –An organ transplant patient from Maryland recently died of a rabies virus that was contracted from the organ the patient received. Experts with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say cases like this are extremely rare.

The organ donor died in 2011, but rabies was not suspected at the time of death. Organs from the donor went to patients in Florida, Georgia, Illinois and Maryland. The other three organ recipients are currently receiving anti-rabies shots.

The rabies virus in this case was determined to be a raccoon type, but it could have infected another animal.

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