US Reports Second Human Case Of Bird Flu Tied To Dairy Cow Outbreak

US reports second human case of bird flu tied to dairy cow outbreak

Washington, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 23rd May, 2024) US health authorities reported Wednesday a second case of bird flu in a human, amid an outbreak of the disease among dairy cows.

The case involves an individual in the northern state of Michigan who is "a worker on a dairy farm where H5N1 virus has been identified in cows," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement.

The first case was announced in April, in a person working on a dairy farm in Texas, who exhibited only mild symptoms.

Despite the second case, the CDC said it considered the health risk assessment for the general public to be low.

Two specimens were collected from the Michigan worker -- one from the nose and the other from the eye -- with only the eye specimen testing positive.

Additionally, "similar to the Texas case, the patient only reported eye symptoms," the CDC said.

"People with close or prolonged, unprotected exposures to infected birds or other animals (including livestock).

.. are at greater risk of infection," the CDC said.

Though the current H5N1 strain, HPAI, has killed millions of poultry during the current wave, affected cows have not fallen severely sick.

Cows and goats joined the list of victims in March, surprising experts because the animals were not thought to be susceptible to this type of influenza.

Virus fragments were found in pasteurized milk, but health authorities say milk sold in US stores is safe because pasteurization effectively kills the disease.

Based on recent studies, most experts say that even if the bird flu virus spreads to a human, the chances of widespread contamination are slim.

There is no evidence of human-to-human transmission at present but health officials fear that if the virus were to eventually spread widely it could mutate into a form that could pass between humans.