of course there's the whole bird flu situation going on, but i was wondering, how do you actually get it? i mean, right now you can basically only get it from birds, unless it morphs, but what would you have to do to actually get it from a bird??
AskGwen answered Monday May 1 2006, 6:43 pm: According to the CDC and WHO, A person may get Bird Flu by coming in contact with an infected bird or an infected bird flu droppings. the bird must have type A strains of the influenza virus.
According to WebMD: Migratory waterfowl - most notably wild ducks - are the natural reservoir of bird flu viruses. If further information is needed then please see the WebMD web site on Bird Flu. [ AskGwen's advice column | Ask AskGwen A Question ]
TheOldOne answered Monday May 1 2006, 6:33 pm: What would you have to do to actually get it from a bird?
Kiss the bird.
Sorry; I couldn't resist. :D
Seriously, here's the information you're looking for:
Basically you can get it from the bodily secretions of an infected bird. The big concern, however, is if the virus mutates into a form that can be transmitted directly from human to human, particularly if it's a respiratory form - that is, if a sneeze or cough can effectively transmit the virus without direct contact.
In 1918 a flu pandemic infected one out of five people worldwide, and killed 1 out of ever 20 to 40 people in the world - that's a two-and-a-half to five percent mortality rate. The total number of people killed is estimated to be between 50-100 MILLION.
There's no need to fear birds particularly, unless you live in an area that has already had cases of avian flu. I wouldn't cuddle any wild birds, but that's not the big danger. The real danger - a mutated form of the virus - is, unfortunately, something that you have no control over.
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