China reports human H5N6 avian influenza case in Guangxi child


news desk Laugh

Hong Kong health officials today reported a human case of avian influenza A (H5N6) on the mainland.

Photo / Robert Hermann

The case concerns a 3-year-old boy who lives in Nanning, Guangxi. He developed symptoms on 1 September and was taken for treatment on 11 September. He is in serious condition.

From 2014 to date, mainland health authorities have reported 81 human cases of avian influenza A (H5N6).

Avian influenza is caused by influenza viruses that mainly infect birds and poultry, such as chickens or ducks. The clinical presentation of bird flu in humans may range from flu-like symptoms (eg fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches) to severe respiratory illness (eg chest infection). An eye infection (conjunctivitis) and gastrointestinal symptoms (eg, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea) have also been reported. The incubation period ranges from 7 to 10 days. More virulent forms can lead to respiratory failure, multiple organ failure, and even death.

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People mainly contract the avian influenza virus through contact with infected birds, poultry (live or dead) or their droppings, or contact with contaminated environments (eg wet markets and live poultry markets). Human-to-human transmission is ineffective. People who are in close contact with poultry are more likely to get bird flu. Older adults, children, and people with chronic diseases are more likely to develop complications such as bronchitis and chest infection.

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