• Thu. Jun 20th, 2024

Avian Influenza A H9N2 Infects 4-Year-Old Boy in India, Prompting WHO Concerns about Further Sporadic Cases

BySamantha Jones

Jun 11, 2024
Symptoms of Avian Flu in a Four-Year-Old Boy

Avian influenza A H9N2 has been reported in India, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This is the second human infection with avian influenza A H9N2 reported to WHO from India, following a case in 2019.

The infected patient is a 4-year-old boy residing in the state of West Bengal in India. He presented himself to a pediatrician on January 26 with fever and abdominal pain. On January 29, he developed convulsions and was admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit of a local hospital on February 1 due to severe breathing difficulty, high fever, and abdominal cramps. The boy was diagnosed with post-infectious bronchiolitis caused by viral pneumonia. He tested positive for influenza B and adenovirus on February 2 and was discharged from the hospital on 28 February. However, on March 3, he was hospitalized again for a respiratory relapse and intubated in another hospital’s pediatric intensive care unit.

On March 5, a nasopharyngeal swab was sent for testing and it tested positive for influenza A and rhinovirus. Subsequent testing at the National Influenza Center of the National Institute of Virology in Pune detected influenza A virus H9N2. The child had been exposed to poultry in and around the home. None of his contacts, including family, neighbors, and healthcare workers, reported respiratory symptoms. The WHO mentioned that further human cases of this virus may occur sporadically as it is a widespread avian influenza virus circulating in poultry in several regions.

By Samantha Jones

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