Mutated Version of the Common Cold

by Jacqueline Sit
NewsWest 9

It's called Adenovirus 14 or AD 14, a mutated version of the common cold that usually causes respiratory infections.

"Adenovirus is one of the many viruses that can cause upper respiratory infections in the winter there is one that's more virulent, more dangerous," Dr. Richard Bartlett, with Permian Prompt Care, said.

The centers for disease control is getting the word out about this emerging strong strand of the illness after it killed 10 people in the last year, and a half and over 100 people got sick in New York, Washington, Oregon and the Lone Star state.

"It's not a reason to panic," Dr. Bartlett pointed out.

Dr. Richard Bartlett with Permian Prompt Care says there are ways to treat the virus with drugs.

"We shouldn't be overly concern about this here in West Texas," Dr. Bartlett added.

Still, newborns and elderly patients are more likely to be affected with the uncommon infection.

"This seems to be dangerous for the young, very old, very compromised immune populations," Dr. Bartlett said.

Here are a few symptoms to look out for:

Pink eye, upper respiratory infection with fever, pneumonia, and gastrointestinal illness.

"Basic precaution, common sense, washing your hands frequently after shaking their hands, because you don't know if they're a carrier or not," Dr. Bartlett said.

I spoke with Ector County Health Department Director Gino Solla, and he says there are no reported cases of this new virus in the Permian Basin.