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InternationalSecond US Dairy Farm Worker Detects H5N1 Strain of Avian Influenza Virus

Second US Dairy Farm Worker Detects H5N1 Strain of Avian Influenza Virus


The United States has reported its second case of a human infected with the H5N1 avian influenza virus strain linked to an outbreak affecting dairy cattle. According to officials, a worker on a Michigan dairy farm recently tested positive for the bird flu virus after coming into close contact with infected cows. Minor eye symptoms were the only effects reported in this individual, who has since made a full recovery.

This latest case follows a similar infection identified in March in a Texas dairy worker. Both instances are connected to larger outbreaks of the avian flu circulating in dairy herds across parts of the US. Over 50 farms in nine states have confirmed cases of H5N1 in their cattle so far. While human infections are uncommon, specialists warn more detections in farmers and others exposed to sick animals are possible as the ongoing situation in the livestock intensifies.

Symptoms of H5N1 influenza in people largely mirror that of seasonal flu varieties, including fever, cough, muscle aches and fatigue. In rare severe cases, the virus can lead to severe complications like pneumonia. Transmission is believed to predominantly occur through direct contact with sick birds or surfaces contaminated by them. Those with prolonged unprotected contact to infected animals face elevated risk.

No ongoing human-to-human transmission of this avian strain has been reported. Still, health agencies are closely monitoring for additional cases and possible mutations enhancing spread between people. Presently, officials say the overall risk to the general public remains low. Continued surveillance and prompt reporting of infections will remain vital to controlling further infections in both animals and humans.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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