Three bird flu cases have been detected in humans in the US amid an outbreak in dairy cattle

News Desk Staff
Medically Reviewed By Dr. Adnan Maqsood

Multiple health authorities have confirmed the third human case of bird flu in the US during an outbreak in dairy cattle.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that the first human case of bird flu emerged in Texas in March, whereas the second case was detected in April from Michigan following the third case of a farmworker reported on 22nd, May 2024.

Although the three cases of influenza A virus are not associated with each other, what’s similar is that the workers were exposed to infected cows. However, there is no indication that the infection spreads from person to person. 

The latest case was detected during the active monitoring program, which was working in collaboration with the CDC. Unlike the first two cases, the third case is a bit different as the patient developed upper respiratory symptoms such as sore throat, cough and congestion along with watery discharge from the eyes. The patient was given antiviral treatment with oseltamivir and is currently recovering at home. The other people in their household are being monitored and precautionary measures are being followed.

The CDC also said that the risk to the general public is minimal, but it depends on the extent of the spread of this virus in dairy cows. 

The main priority of the health authorities is to prevent the spread of the flu virus (H5N1) among farm workers who are at a higher risk of exposure. Therefore, several initiatives have been taken to ensure worker protection, including providing personal protective equipment to herd workers. 

The recent update is that CDC is collaborating with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to characterize the highly pathogenic flu virus H5N1. A surveillance strategy has also been launched nationwide to help ensure the detection of rare cases of influenza A virus infection. As of now, 67 herds in nine states have tested positive for avian flu.

While the current risk of the spread of bird flu in humans remains low, staying informed and taking precautions within the community is essential. If you experience flu-like symptoms after coming in contact with birds or cows, seek medical attention immediately to prevent complications. 

Family Urgent Care reaches out to provide critical information and support as new bird flu cases emerges, emphasizing the importance of early detection and treatment. For more information on bird flu or to speak to a healthcare professional, please call us at 219-440-7351.

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