What Is Avian Influenza?

Avian influenza, more commonly known as avian flu or bird flu, is a variety of influenza caused by viruses adapted to birds. It has five subtypes that can cause infection in humans.

History of Avian Influenza

In 1878, the first cases of avian influenza (known as fowl plague back then) was documented from other diseases that caused high mortality rates in birds.

Nearly a century later, there were fifteen recorded occasions of the emergence of HPAI viruses in poultry, but losses were minimal from 1959 to 1995.

Then, from 1996 to 2008, there were eleven HPAI outbreaks in poultry worldwide and four of those outbreaks involved dozens of bird species and millions of birds.

All that being said, influenza A/H5N1 (the subtype responsible for the avian flu in humans) was first isolated from a goose in China in the year 1996.

In 1997, the first human infections were reported in Hong Kong. Since 2003, over 700 human cases of Asian HPAI H5N1 have been reported to the WHO.

Those 700 cases were from 60 countries around the world, but the vast majority of them were from 15 countries in Asia, Africa, the Pacific, Europe, and the Middle East.

Symptoms of Diseases Caused By Avian Influenza

As we mentioned earlier, there are multiple subtypes of the avian influenza virus. Some can cause disease in humans, while others are harmless.

However, the most common subtype of avian influenza is H5N1. It’s the only documented cause of the bird flu, which has the following symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea and vomiting
  • Severe respiratory illness
  • Mild to severe conjunctivitis
  • Influenza-like illness that causes a fever, cough, sore throat, and muscle aches

Although none of those symptoms sound serious, health experts say that the bird flu can lead to more serious conditions if it’s not treated right away.

How You Can Treat Avian Influenza

Since avian influenza is developing resistance to antibiotics, there’s no knowing whether the medicine that can treat it today will work tomorrow.

Currently, doctors prescribe antiviral drugs oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza) for the treatment and prevention of avian influenza A viruses along with supportive care.

All that being said, unless you’re already suffering from a disease caused by avian influenza, you shouldn’t be worrying about the treatment.

You should be worrying about how to prevent the disease.

Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So why not take safety precautions right now, so you won’t have to face the risk of facing a problem caused by avian influenza?

If you’re now wondering what safety precautions we are talking about, disinfecting your home and workplace with a solution that can kill avian influenza is all you need to do.

How Alliance Enviro-Tech Can Help

Alliance Enviro-Tech can disinfect both residential and commercial spaces thoroughly.

Our Path-Guard® System can kill avian influenza in under 5 minutes, giving you peace of mind to know your property is safe for everyone living or working there.

For more information, contact us to find out how we can help keep your property safe and clean.