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Bird flu symptoms

Updated: Monday, August 31, 2015 10:54 PM EDT
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Bird flu symptoms

Although there have been too few human cases to determine the exact incubation period of bird flu, it would be expected to be from three to 10 days. The symptoms of bird flu in humans are similar to those of regular influenza and include:

Complications Of Bird flu
Bird flu in humans can cause a range of serious and potentially fatal complications, including: Tell your doctor if you've been to a country where there is bird flu
If you have recently returned from a country that had an outbreak of bird flu and you get flu symptoms, see your doctor immediately. When making the appointment, tell the clinic staff about your travel including any visits to markets, farms or anywhere else where birds were present.

Influenza viruses can mutate
Influenza viruses that infect animal species can mutate and infect humans. The human immune system may have no defences against viruses that previously only infected animals. That's why infection with these viruses can result in more severe disease in people.

If the H5N1 bird flu virus were to mix with a human influenza virus, such a 'combined' virus could create a new human influenza virus that could spread rapidly.

Health experts are concerned that the current bird flu affecting Asia could become a worldwide pandemic if the virus does mutate. The worst influenza pandemic in modern history was the Spanish flu, which occurred in 1918–19 and killed up to 50 million people.

Measures to contain the spread of the current bird flu virus include identifying and culling affected poultry flocks, research into tests and vaccines, and rigorous quarantine practices.

Treatment options
Several antiviral medications used to treat human influenza are also effective for bird flu. These could be used if a person developed symptoms after possible exposure to bird flu, or to prevent illness in a person who was in close contact with bird flu. Currently testing for bird flu vaccines is an ongoing process.

At the moment, there is no need for people living in USA, or people making short visits to countries with cases of bird flu, to have antiviral medications. Americans living long-term in countries affected by bird flu should consider having a supply of antiviral medications in the home to use on medical advice should the situation change while they are away from the US.

The Federal government is stockpiling Relenza and Tamiflu, two drugs that may be used in the treatment of human cases of bird flu. In the case of an outbreak in humans, these drugs would be used to maintain essential services, prevent transmission and provide treatment for people who are already ill.

A vaccine against bird flu is in development, but is not currently available. The current influenza vaccines will not protect humans against bird flu. However, people who may be exposed to bird flu should consider being vaccinated against human influenza viruses to reduce the risk of the viruses 'mixing' to form a new flu strain.

Advice for travellers
Be aware of the risk of bird flu if you are travelling to a country where outbreaks are occurring. Suggestions include:
All state turkey farms hit by bird flu restocked, recovering - Casper Star-Tr...
31 Aug 2015 at 5:47pm
All state turkey farms hit by bird flu restocked, recovering - Casper Star-Tr...
31 Aug 2015 at 5:47pm
Bird flu outbreak affects classes at Iowa State - Iowa State Daily
31 Aug 2015 at 3:07pm
Bird flu outbreak affects classes at Iowa State - Iowa State Daily
31 Aug 2015 at 3:07pm
Farmers preparing for fall bird flu outbreak amid ongoing mystery - NET Website
31 Aug 2015 at 5:03am
Farmers preparing for fall bird flu outbreak amid ongoing mystery - NET Website
31 Aug 2015 at 5:03am
Bird flu virus detected in southern Taiwan poultry farms - Focus Taiwan News ...
31 Aug 2015 at 3:51am
Bird flu virus detected in southern Taiwan poultry farms - Focus Taiwan News ...
31 Aug 2015 at 3:51am
Ag Dept Hosts Avian Flu Info Meetings For Backyard Poultry Farmers - WUNC
31 Aug 2015 at 2:07am
Ag Dept Hosts Avian Flu Info Meetings For Backyard Poultry Farmers - WUNC
31 Aug 2015 at 2:07am
No bird flu worries shown at state fair - West Central Tribune
29 Aug 2015 at 12:05pm
No bird flu worries shown at state fair - West Central Tribune
29 Aug 2015 at 12:05pm
Bird flu concerns affect agriculture displays at fairs - WPTZ The Champlain V...
29 Aug 2015 at 7:33am
Bird flu concerns affect agriculture displays at fairs - WPTZ The Champlain V...
29 Aug 2015 at 7:33am
Iowa ag secretary revisits bird flu nightmare - Dubuque Telegraph Herald
29 Aug 2015 at 12:52am
Iowa ag secretary revisits bird flu nightmare - Dubuque Telegraph Herald
29 Aug 2015 at 12:52am
Omelet prices rise at Bay City diner after bird flu kills millions of chicken...
28 Aug 2015 at 12:00pm
Omelet prices rise at Bay City diner after bird flu kills millions of chicken...
28 Aug 2015 at 12:00pm
Japan partly lifts US, Canada poultry ban after bird flu - Reuters
27 Aug 2015 at 11:24pm
Japan partly lifts US, Canada poultry ban after bird flu - Reuters
27 Aug 2015 at 11:24pm
Poultry owners learn about preventing bird flu - DeKalb Daily Chronicle
26 Aug 2015 at 9:39pm
Poultry owners learn about preventing bird flu - DeKalb Daily Chronicle
26 Aug 2015 at 9:39pm
Bird flu takes its toll on US poultry processor - GlobalMeatNews.com
26 Aug 2015 at 5:12am
Bird flu takes its toll on US poultry processor - GlobalMeatNews.com
26 Aug 2015 at 5:12am
Bird flu under control for the moment in WI - WKOW
25 Aug 2015 at 4:09pm
Bird flu under control for the moment in WI - WKOW
25 Aug 2015 at 4:09pm
US ends limits on Canada poultry imports imposed after bird flu - Reuters Canada
25 Aug 2015 at 1:40pm
US ends limits on Canada poultry imports imposed after bird flu - Reuters Canada
25 Aug 2015 at 1:40pm
ISU cancels poultry farm classes to avoid bird flu - DesMoinesRegister.com
25 Aug 2015 at 12:16pm
ISU cancels poultry farm classes to avoid bird flu - DesMoinesRegister.com
25 Aug 2015 at 12:16pm
Bird flu keeps fowl from fair - Independent Tribune
25 Aug 2015 at 10:39am
Bird flu keeps fowl from fair - Independent Tribune
25 Aug 2015 at 10:39am
Bird flu threat cancels Eastern Triangle Farm Tour - News & Observer
24 Aug 2015 at 3:57pm
Bird flu threat cancels Eastern Triangle Farm Tour - News & Observer
24 Aug 2015 at 3:57pm
Iowa lifts bird flu quarantine areas - GlobalMeatNews.com
24 Aug 2015 at 4:41am
Iowa lifts bird flu quarantine areas - GlobalMeatNews.com
24 Aug 2015 at 4:41am
Iowa Farm Bureau study: Bird flu outbreak costly for state in many ways - Gra...
22 Aug 2015 at 7:11pm
Iowa Farm Bureau study: Bird flu outbreak costly for state in many ways - Gra...
22 Aug 2015 at 7:11pm
Experts Worry Bird Flu Could Recur In Colder Months - CBS Local
21 Aug 2015 at 8:30pm
Experts Worry Bird Flu Could Recur In Colder Months - CBS Local
21 Aug 2015 at 8:30pm