Worst Fears Confirmed: It's the Norovirus

If you're attending tomorrow's NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships, you might consider leaving some space between you and the person next to you.  That's because the Ohio Department of Health confirmed that at least some of the nineteen student-athletes who were hospitalized for flu-like symptoms have been infected with the highly-contagious norovirus.

Norovirus, named for the town of Norwalk, Ohio just 100 miles up the road from Columnus, subjects its victims to explosive vomiting and  diarrhea.  The symptoms can last from 24-60 hours.  Those infected with the virus are highly contagious even before revealing their symptoms.  It also means that several more cases could manifest themselves before the meet is over.  A year ago the norovirus forced the shut down of Hope College.

According to the Columbus Dispatch, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been notified and is investigating to see if the source of the virus was the flight the infected teams flew on or a location in columbus. 

Those infected have been instructed to not visit the aquatic center until at least 48 hours after their last symptoms.  That could prove a difficult challenge for a group hyper-competitive Division I athletes.