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Woman's Death Sparks Bird Flu Fears In Indonesia

by VR Sreeraman on  January 28, 2009 at 3:26 PM Bird Flu News   - G J E 4
A 21-year-old Indonesian woman has died of suspected bird flu, a doctor said Wednesday.
 Woman's Death Sparks Bird Flu Fears In Indonesia
Woman's Death Sparks Bird Flu Fears In Indonesia
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The woman died on Saturday in Doctor Soetomo Hospital in Surabaya, East Java, after showing bird flu symptoms, said Palilingan, a doctor in the hospital's avian flu team who like many Indonesians goes by only one name.

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"She had breathing difficulties, high fever and lost consciousness," Palilingan told AFP.

He said the presence of the deadly H5N1 strain of the virus would have to be confirmed after testing of tissue samples.

Two positive results are needed before Indonesian authorities confirm a human bird flu infection.

A health ministry spokeswoman said the ministry had sent experts to check on the condition of poultry in the woman's village in Tulungagung district, East Java.

Indonesia is the country worst-hit by avian influenza with 115 deaths officially recorded since 2003.

Experts fear the virus, which is usually spread directly from birds to humans, could mutate into a form easily transmissible between people, sparking a global pandemic.

Source: AFP
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