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General Information Regarding Avian Influenza (bird Flu)

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The World Health Organization (WHO) makes reports and updates regarding new human cases of infection with bird flu. The only subtype that can cause severe illness to people is Influenza A /H5N1 virus, initially it affects chickens, ducks and other birds by the process of mutation they can become highly pathogenic. Because highly pathogenic viruses can survive for long periods in tissue, water and in the environment, especially when temperatures are low is transmitted very easily in chickens and other birds through direct contact with feces and secretions from infected birds, eggs, feed, water, cages equipment, vehicles and clothing. Public health authorities monitor human illnesses associated with avian influenza. In Hong-Kong occured for the first time infection both in humans and poultry and were killed about 1.5 million chickens.

In China and Hong-Kong avian influenza A (H9N2) virus infection affected two children who recovered. The source was unknown, but suspected the poultry.

In Virginia, 2002 an outbreak of H7N2 among poultry was descovered but,with no human victims. Canada, 2004: human infections among poultry workers with H7N3.

Thailand and Vietnam human infections with H5N1. Azerbaijan, Cambodia, China, Djibouti, Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Thailand, Turkey, 2006: Human infections with H5N1 occurred as a result of contact with infected poultry and with infected death swangs. Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam, 2005 two persons have been infected with H5N1 as result of consuming uncooked duck blood. China two cases of patogenic infections with avian influenza A (H5N1) have been confirmed in a family travelling through China. Netherlands, 2003 were reported outbreaks of influenza A (H7N7) in several farms, after which in pigs and people, 90 people were confrmed with bird flu virus H7N7 in association with cases of eye conjunctivitis, one death occured at a veterinarian with acute respiratory distress syndrome and other complications after having direct contact with infected poultry. In New York, 2003 there has been registered one case a patient with respiratory symptoms which recovered in few weeks and tests confirmed it had been avian influenza A (H7N2) virus. Signs and symptoms of bird flu in humans are similar to other influenza viruses: sore throat and cough, fever, muscle weakness and/or pain, eye infections, with life-threatening complications such as: severe viral pneumonia, respiratory distress syndrome, multi- organ failure.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration suggests the following antiviral agents supposed to prevent and treat avian influenza: amantadine, rimantadine, oseltamivir, and zanamivir. They may be not always effective it has been demonstrated that viruses are resistent to amantadine and rimantadine. In the United States they are not in use any more for the treatment or prevention (prophylaxis) of influenza A. Specialists are monitoring the resistence of avian influenza A viruses to influenza antiviral medications.

For more information about bird flu or even about bird flu vaccine please review this page http://www.bird-flu-info-center.com/bird-flu-vaccine.htm

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