Sidenote: Hope you're finding this useful? I have always been curious about this matter. And when I found very little quality information about it, I decided to share a part of what I've learned about it - which is why this article came to be written. Read on.
Human flu symptoms are:
Cases of bird flu are more likely to cause breathing problems and pneumonia, and can be fatal.
Are there treatments?
Current antiviral medications for the human influenza virus are effective.
Has anyone died?
Avian Influenza has a relatively high mortality rate compared to human influenza
Hong Kong 1997 - 18 people were infected and 6 people died.
Hong Kong 2003 - in a family that had visited southern China, there were two cases of the disease and one death.
Far East 2004 - up to 10 deaths have been linked to this latest outbreak of the disease in a number of Asian countries
What is a pandemic?
Defined by Dictionary.com a pandemic is:
Widespread, general. Medicine. Epidemic over a wide geographic area and affecting a large proportion of the population: pandemic influenza. Are Pandemics Common?
On average mass epidemics occur every 20-30 years. It has been over 40 years since the last one.
If the Avian Influenza Virus mutates to a strand that is easily transmitted to humans it could kill millions.
In order for it to become a pandemic strain, it would have to adapt to become highly infectious to humans by injecting itself into a human virus.
Can it be Controlled?
By changing traditional farming practices in Asia where animals and humans chares unsanitory quarters the likelihood of a spread would decrease.
Over the last year, the virus has killed 32 vietnamese, 12 Thais, and one Cambodian.
The virus also has been found in other animals such as tigers and cats.
What is bird flu