Parrot Fever

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In a recent outbreak parrot fever has claimed the lives of five individuals across Europe this year.

About Parrot Fever

  • It is also known as psittacosis.
  • It is caused by the bacterium Chlamydophila psittaci (C. psittaci).
  • The bacteria can infect many mammals — including dogs, cats and horses — but most often infects birds.
  • It primarily affects birds but can be transmitted to humans through inhalation of contaminated particles from feathers or droppings.
  • The disease is more common in people who come into close contact with birds — such as poultry workers, veterinarians and pet-bird owners. 
  • Humans can catch psittacosis by inhaling airborne particles containing C. psittaci, but human-to-human transmission of the disease is very rare, with only a handful of cases ever reported.
  • Symptoms: Includes fever, headache, muscle pains, coughing, difficulty breathing, and symptoms resembling pneumonia.
  • Severe cases may lead to complications such as myocarditis or other neurological symptoms.
  • Treatment: Treatment typically involves antibiotics, such as doxycycline or tetracycline, administered orally for two to three weeks.
  • Supportive care, including over-the-counter medications for symptomatic relief and maintaining proper hygiene practices, is also crucial for recovery.

Q1) What is a virus?

A virus is a microscopic infectious agent that can only replicate within the living cells of a host organism. Viruses are considered obligate intracellular parasites because they lack the cellular machinery necessary for carrying out metabolic processes and reproduction on their own. Instead, they rely on the host cell's machinery to replicate and produce new viral particles.

Source: Parrot Fever: Here's all you should know about the deadly disease that has claimed five lives in Europe