Children catch it by touching something that’s contaminated and then putting their hands in their mouth. The spread of rotavirus infection is a particular problem in hospitals and in day care settings, where it can be easily spread from child to child. It’s also easily spread by day care workers, especially when they change diapers without washing their hands afterward.
Symptoms of rotavirus infection, which may last up to eight days, include fever, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, and frequent, watery diarrhea. If it’s severe enough, the diarrhea can cause dehydration, and it’s the dehydration that’s responsible for the hospitalizations and deaths associated with this disease.