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Monday, May 4, 2009

Pork Products Are Safe To Consume, Human Exposure To Pigs Will Not Infect You, Says American Veterinary Medical Association

Human exposure to pigs and the consumption of pork products will not increase your risk of becoming infected with swine flu, says AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association). Pork products are safe to eat, the association stresses.

Dr. Ron DeHaven, CEO, AVMA said "This disease is transmitted from human to human and, as far as we know right now, it does not involve pigs, livestock or pets. That said, the association advises people to follow proper cooking guidelines for all meat products including pork to avoid food borne illnesses such as salmonella."

According to the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, no new virus has been found in pigs.

Dr. DeHaven said "The AVMA is working with the American Association of Swine Veterinarians and so far there have been no reports of outbreaks among swine herds, although members of the group are stepping up surveillance for the virus and keeping in close contact with federal and state animal health officials."

Dr. Bret Marsh, the Indiana state veterinarian, explained "It's unfortunate that this flu strain is being called swine flu, because the virus is a combination of viruses including swine, poultry and human influenzas. The reality is that swine flu hasn't been found in swine populations in the USA."

The AVMA believes that this new virus is being transmitted from human-to-human. People who had no contact with pigs are transmitting the virus to other people who had no contact with pigs, says the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). The CDC adds that there is no evidence that pigs have been infected with this new virus.

The virus is believed to originate in North America, where cases of infection were first reported. It has caused serious illness and deaths in Mexico, and one death in the USA. However, Mexican authorities say the death rate is falling fast as health services rapidly learn to treat people effectively and the population seeks medical help as soon as symptoms appear.

Symptoms of Swine Flu, or North American Influenza

Ordinary seasonal human flu like symptoms
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Sore Throat
  • Aching body and bones
  • Fatigue
  • An additional symptom can include diarrhea and/or vomiting
American Veterinary Medical Association

Further information on Swine Flu

Written by Christian Nordqvist
Copyright: Medical News Today

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