The dangerous avian flu to humans? symptoms, treatment, prevention

Influenza viruses are generally characterized by a high degree of species specificity. I.e, virus, characteristic of the species, "Faithful" to him and may rarely be transmitted to other mammals. Flu, people who are ill, not be passed, for example, horse or seals. Therefore, bird flu in humans - both overcame the species barrier - particularly dangerous. For avian influenza in humans are usually characterized by severe and not always typical symptoms, and a host of complications - due to the fact, that the bird flu to humans - is an unknown organism to the infectious agent, to which our immune system is not completely prepared.

Официальное название птичьего гриппа - H5N1
The official name of the bird flu - H5N1

Why do people get sick

For, to "make" their human host, the virus had to learn to cause epidemic and "master" mode of transmission from humans to humans. Up to 2016 years has not been established appearance of such mutations.

but, this year, Alas, infection according to some reports still began to spread, It is transmitted from person to person.

risk of infection, undoubtedly, It existed from the very beginning, but in the opening period of the strain, it was mainly in farms with outbreaks and insufficient safety compliance (cm. pictured below), as well as the sale of live poultry markets.

Птичий грипп чаще всего возникает на птицефермах
Bird flu most likely to occur in poultry farms

As it has been found during the various studies of the disease in humans, at that time the source of infection was always a direct contact - or with sick wild and domestic birds, or with their flesh in cleaning of territories. Between the beginning of the spread of infection in people mentioned, that contamination of personnel or family members of the sick occurred rarely or not at all happening, Laboratory confirmation of this just was not. Besides, human infections stopped immediately after the instant (three days) destruction of suspected disease in poultry populations in g. Hong Kong.
Now, in order, not to get sick this dangerous disease, We need to be more vigilant - to know, how to manifest disease, to be able to detect signs of bird flu at a very early stage of its timely and begin to treat the injured.

Avian influenza and its symptoms

Infections strains A(H5N1) and A(H7N9) are called "bird flu" and are characterized by a high mortality rate, largely exceeding seasonal influenza per se. Virus type A(H7N9) strikes, usually, those people, who have other comorbidities.

  • The incubation period of this species lasts from flu 2 days and up to eight, and in some cases even 17 days, its duration may be influenced by many factors. In raznovidnosti A(H7N9) this period is on average 5-7 days.
  • Further symptoms of bird flu in humans appear to be a number of signs, similar to those of seasonal influenza, namely in the form of:
  1. temperature increase,
  2. pronounced chills,
  3. myalgias and headaches,
  4. feeling an ache in the joints,
  5. sore throat,
  6. fever,
  7. cough,
  8. rhinitis (common cold),
  9. as well as conjunctivitis and lacrimation.
Симптоматика птичьего гриппа напоминает обычный сезонный грипп
Symptomatology avian flu resembles seasonal flu

note! A sick bird flu man notes at an extremely rapid increase in these symptoms compared with a gradual increase in symptoms in people, suffering from seasonal diseases.

  • On the second or third days of illness (peak period) the patient has a typical manifestation of avian influenza can be fixed - quick defeat lower division of the respiratory system to the risk of the formation of primary viral pneumonia (shortness of breath, hoarseness, coughing). There have been cracking sounds on inspiration, respiratornыy distress, hemoptysis (infrequently).
При заболевании птичьим гриппом, спустя несколько дней начинается поражение нижнего отдела системы дыхания
When the disease is bird flu a few days later begins the lower division of the respiratory system failure

Important! Some patients at the time when the early symptoms were recorded: diarrhea, retching, pain in the region of the abdomen and chest, as well as nosebleeds and gum damage.

  • If the patient is on the mend, he often develop complications of infection, multiple organ failure comprising, hypoxemia, as well as secondary fungal and bacterial infections.

AND, Unfortunately, the disease can result in lethal.

Diagnosis and treatment

Timely detect the early stages of avian flu is quite difficult - due to the non-specificity of the original of its clinical manifestations. But he has one interesting feature - in contrast to seasonal influenza virus, with avian influenza oropharyngeal swabs result shows more pronounced in comparison with dabs, taken from the patient's nose. It is required to hold at least one of the following tests to confirm the diagnosis, received:

  • a positive result for the detection of viral culture,
  • Positive PCR reactions to identify the type influenza,
  • a positive reaction immunofluorescence using monoclonal antibodies against H5 and elevated titer of H5-specific antibodies is at least four times in paired sera.

Avian flu treatment at an early stage is conducted with the use of antiviral drugs (about them - below), having a moderate therapeutic effect. The rest, to treat a disease symptomatic therapy is recommended:

  • bed rest,
  • warm drinking plenty of fluids,
  • broth "Thoracic collection" by coughing, syrups and Medicine (Doctor "Mom", Gerbion, Alteyka etc.. P.),
  • inhalations with eucalyptus,
  • sleep,
  • gargle decoction of herbs and solution furatsilina,
  • restorative and vitamin drugs,
  • diet compliance.

According to numerous studies, some of antiviral agents, especially oseltamivir, reduce the duration of viral replication agent and improves recovery prospects.

Осельтамивир - один из лучших препаратов при птичьем гриппе
Oseltamivir - one of the best drugs for avian influenza

In cases, when there is a suspicion of the disease this type of flu, It is recommended as soon as possible to appoint a patient oseltamivir. If it is done for 48 no. the onset of symptoms, the drug will be most effective. However, taking into account the increased mortality, A captured in infections(H5N1) and a(H7N9), so this drug is given and patients with more advanced stages of disease development.

note! Corticosteroids should not be used in this disease.

Important to remember, that patients with intestinal symptoms degree of assimilation of the drug can be significantly reduced.

Also, your doctor should know, that these strains are highly resistant to the class means adamantanes, according to this, their use is not recommended.


The vaccine against avian influenza has not yet developed, despite, that on its development for many years struggling US scientists, China, Russia and several European countries.

Most of the data, available today, It testifies to the fact, that the main source of danger for people is in direct contact with dead or sick birds and with their droppings. but, at 2016 , there were facts, indicating the possibility of transmission of the virus from person to person, although it was not officially confirmed. therefore, if you have no pressing need, it is better to postpone the trip to those countries, which at the moment are recorded outbreak of the disease. And should not be part of the registration period in the cases go to places of trade of live poultry or meat pair, farm and other places, where it will be in direct contact with infected birds. Besides, better still would be to avoid areas of high concentrations of people and strictly follow all the rules of personal hygiene.

  • In no case should not allow their children to play outside and with wild birds or simply touch them with your hands,
  • should not be used for cooking meat dead birds, despite the lack of data about the infection through the meat after heat treatment,
  • about the case of death for some reason all the birds need to notify the local veterinarian or SES,
  • dead birds be disposed of in a respirator, then thoroughly wash hands and made a change of clothes,
  • meat and eggs of birds are always subject to sufficient heat treatment,
  • Meat or meat products stored in the fridge strictly separate from the other products,
  • If you have made contact with a bird (dead or alive) and after having SARS symptoms, seek medical attention immediately, preliminarily informing the medical personnel in the contact.


  • Most avian influenza viruses are not dangerous for humans; but there are some species, which can cause the development of severe disease in humans - A(H5N1) and A(H7N9).
  • Outbreaks of the infection in poultry - are dangerous to humans, since they are connected with the action directly to people and pandemic potential.
  • Though, Most cases of human bird flu infection is associated with a history of contact with infected poultry.
  • Combating the spread of the disease among animals - this is the first step towards, to significantly reduce the risk to people.

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