By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Hong Kong Department of Health reported an additional human case of avian influenza A(H5N6) in China. This is the second case reported from the Mainland in two days.
The case is a 52-year-old woman living in Huizhou, Guangdong Province.
From 2014 to date, 40 human cases of avian influenza A(H5N6) have been reported by Mainland health authorities and 16 of the cases have been reported since December 2020.
Avian influenza is caused by those influenza viruses that mainly affect birds and poultry, such as chickens or ducks.
Clinical presentation of avian influenza in humans includes eye infection (conjunctivitis), flu-like symptoms (e.g. fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches) or severe respiratory illness (e.g. chest infection). The incubation period ranges from 7 to 10 days.
The more virulent forms can result in respiratory failure, multi-organ failure and even death. People mainly become infected with avian influenza virus through contact with infected birds and poultry (live or dead) or their droppings, or contact with contaminated environments (such as wet markets and live poultry markets). Human-to-human transmission is inefficient.
People in close contact with poultry are more susceptible to contracting avian influenza. The elderly, children and people with chronic illness have a higher risk of developing complications such as bronchitis and chest infection.
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