Bird flu kills 11-year-old girl in Cambodia, officials say

Phnom Penh, Cambodia –

An 11-year-old Cambodian girl has died from bird flu, the country’s first known human H5N1 infection since 2014, health officials said.

Avian influenza, also known as bird flu, usually infects poultry and was not considered a threat to people until 1997, when it broke out among visitors to a live poultry market in Hong Kong. Most human cases worldwide have been linked to direct contact with infected domestic poultry, but recently there has been evidence of infections in a variety of mammals and the possibility that the virus may have evolved to spread more easily among humans. There is concern that there is

A girl from the southeastern province of Prey Veng fell ill on February 16 and was sent to a hospital in the capital Phnom Penh for treatment. She was diagnosed Wednesday after suffering from a fever of up to 39 degrees Celsius (102 degrees Fahrenheit) accompanied by a cough and sore throat, and died shortly thereafter, the health ministry said in a statement Wednesday night.

Health officials took samples from dead wild birds in a reserve near the girl’s home, the ministry said in a separate statement on Thursday. He said he would warn residents about it.

Cambodian Health Minister Mam Bunheng said bird flu poses a particularly high risk to children, who may feed domesticated poultry, collect eggs, play with birds and clean cages. warned that it would bring

Symptoms of H5N1 infection are similar to those of other flu, such as cough, pain and fever, and in severe cases, patients can develop life-threatening pneumonia.

According to the World Health Organization, between 2003 and 2014, 56 people with H5N1 were infected in Cambodia, 37 of whom died.

Globally, approximately 870 infections and 457 deaths have been reported to WHO in 21 countries. But the pace has slowed, with about 170 infected and her 50 dead over the past seven years.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus earlier this month expressed concern about bird flu infections in mammals such as mink, otters, foxes and sea lions.

“H5N1 has been circulating widely in wild and poultry for 25 years, but recent mammalian spread needs to be closely monitored,” he warned.

In January, a 9-year-old Ecuadorian girl became the first reported case of human infection in Latin America and the Caribbean. She was treated with antiviral drugs.

Earlier this month, Tedros said the WHO still assessed the risk to humans from bird flu as low.

“But we cannot expect that to continue and we must be prepared for a change in the status quo.” He advised people not to touch dead or sick wild animals and advised the state to step up surveillance of environments where people and animals interact.

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