Avian Influenza

Hippokratia 2006, 10(1):3-6

J Kavaliotis
Dpt of Paediatrics, Infectious Diseases Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece


Avian influenza is due to H5N1 type of influenza virus. It is hosted by birds, but may infect several species of mammals and specially the domestic poultry. The virus is transmitted by infectious droplets and droplet nuclei, by direct contact and, perhaps, by indirect contract. Two features of the current H5N1 outbreaks are striking: the predominance of children and young abults and the high mortality rate. The diagnosis needs a travel and epidemio-logic history as well as a close contact with patients or sick poultry. The management of avian flu include treatment and prevention. Oseltamivir is the drug of choice (75 mg twice daily for 5 days). Isolation precautions similar to thoce used for SARS – infected patients are recommended.