HEALTH

First human case of avian influenza in U.S. is confirmed by CDC

Apr 28, 2022, 8:38 PM | Updated: Apr 30, 2022, 10:32 am
bird flu utah bald eagles at farmington bay...
The spread of the avian flu has officials at Tracy Aviary taking precautions for its eagles and other exhibits. The avian flu is a disease that is spread from wild migrating birds to backyard animals such as chickens. The CDC confirmed Thursday the first human case of avian influenza in the U.S. Photo: Division of Wildlife Resources

SALT LAKE CITY — The CDC confirmed Thursday the first human case of avian influenza.

It was first reported by the state of Colorado and later confirmed by the CDC. According to the CDC, this case involves an individual who had direct exposure to poultry and was involved in the culling (depopulating) of poultry.

The only symptom the victim reported having was fatigue. The CDC reports that the victim has since recovered. However, the patient is being isolated and treated with an influenza antiviral drug.

Despite the case, the CDC considers human risk to the virus to be low. However, the CDC recommends individuals who are at high-risk or exposed to infect birds to take appropriate precautions.

Other individuals at the culling operation in Colorado have tested negative for the virus. Out of abundance of caution, however, the CDC says those individuals are being retested. 

This is the second reported case of avian influenza in human. The CDC reports that it’s the first one in the United States. The first reported case of avian influenza in a human was reported in the United Kingdom in December 2021. The CDC has tracked more than 2,500 individuals who have been exposed to the virus, and this is the only case to be found.

To date, the avian influenza virus has been discovered among backyard and commercial birds in 29 states and in wild birds in 34 states. 

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