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WHO: Man in Mexico is first known fatal case of H5N2 bird flu variant

The man, a resident of Mexico,  died after being infected with a bird flu subtype never before confirmed to have spread to humans, WHO said Wednesday.

A 59-year-old who had no known exposure to poultry or other animals, has died of the bird flu, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.

The man, a resident of Mexico, died after being infected with a bird flu subtype never before confirmed to have spread to humans, WHO said.

According to The Washington Post, the man suffered from other underlying health conditions but had no known exposure to poultry or other animals before being formally diagnosed by a laboratory with the H5N2 subtype of avian flu.

The case marks the first time a human has been confirmed to be infected with this subtype.

“Due to the constantly evolving nature of influenza viruses, WHO continues to stress the importance of global surveillance,” the organization said in a statement. “This case does not change the current WHO recommendations on public health measures and surveillance of influenza.”

The agency still sets the current risks to the general population as “low.”

The man had been sick and bedridden for three weeks before he began to have symptoms of fever, shortness of breath, diarrhea and general malaise, according to the Post.

He died on April 25.

Three people in the United States have been confirmed as being infected with the avian flu H5N1 virus.

On April 16, the USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service microbiologists identified a shift in an H5N1 sample from a cow in Kansas that could indicate that the virus has an adaptation to mammals, according to a statement from the USDA.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted further tests of the specimen sequence and said the overall risk factor of the virus infecting the general public had not changed.

The shift has been seen previously in other mammalian infections and it did not impact viral transmission, the agency said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the following are signs and symptoms of bird flu in humans:

• Conjunctivitis

• Mild flu-like upper respiratory symptoms

• Pneumonia

• Fever or feeling feverish

• Cough

• Sore throat

• Runny or stuffy nose

• Muscle or body aches

• Headaches

• Fatigue

• Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

• Diarrhea

• Nausea

• Vomiting

• Seizures


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