Parrots diseases and humans.

parrot diseases transmitted to humans

You will find there are human lung diseases directly related to chronic exposure to bird dander. They’re called Hypersensitivity Pneumonitis and Extrinsic Alveolitis. The terminology for such diseases within the avian bird culture is termed pigeon breeder’s lung, bird breeder’s lung and bird fanciers lung. These diseases that effect the birds, bird owners and breeders may well be debilitating if it isn’t controlled.

Chlamydia Psittaci

Birds can have a latent infection. “Latent” means they appear healthy and do not show any symptoms now but they can show symptoms later. These infected birds carrying the Chlamydia psittaci bacteria may shed the organism intermittently or sometimes continuously for weeks or months. Stress associated with nutritional deficiencies, overcrowding, breeding, egg-laying and prolonged transport may cause birds with a latent infection to shed infectious agents. When shedding occurs, the infected birds excrete the bacteria in the feces and nasal discharges and the bacteria can remain infective for several months.
Psittacosis

Psittacosis is an infectious disease in humans that has mild, non-specific flu-like symptoms. Psittacosis refers to any infection or disease caused by Chlamydia psittaci, one of several microorganisms in the genus Chlamydia. This disease can be transmitted from infected birds to humans. parrot disease, ornithosis, and chlamydiosis are other names for psittacosis
Symptoms

What are the symptoms of infection among birds?Chlamydia psittaci infects wild and domestic birds and poultry. Birds which contract the infection include parrots, canaries, pigeons, chickens, ducks, and turkeys. The time between exposure to Chlamydia psittaci and the onset of illness in caged birds ranges from three days to several weeks. Sick birds show signs of:

sleepiness,
shivering,
weight loss,
breathing difficulties,
diarrhea.
Birds can have a latent infection. “Latent” means they appear healthy and do not show any symptoms now but they can show symptoms later. These infected birds carrying the Chlamydia psittaci bacteria may shed the organism intermittently or sometimes continuously for weeks or months. Stress associated with nutritional deficiencies, overcrowding, breeding, egg-laying and prolonged transport may cause birds with a latent infection to shed infectious agents. When shedding occurs, the infected birds excrete the bacteria in the feces and nasal discharges and the bacteria can remain infective for several months
How are humans infected

Humans can become infected with Chlamydia psittaci by breathing in the organism when the urine, respiratory secretion, or dried feces of infected birds is aerosolized (i.e., dispersed in the air as very fine droplets or dust particles). Other sources of exposure include mouth-to-beak contact, a bite from an infected bird, and handling the plumage and tissues of infected birds.

The signs of infection among humans?When a person breathes in Chlamydia psittaci bacteria, the lungs’ defense mechanisms attempt to neutralize them. The bacteria that avoid this defense start an infection that varies in severity from a mild flu-like illness to severe pneumonia. Generally, the signs and symptoms appear within four to 15 days after exposure but commonly occur after 10 days. These include:

fever,
chills,
cough,
weakness or fatigue,
muscle and chest pain,
loss of appetite,
nausea,
vomiting,
diarrhea,
headache,
sweating,
abnormal intolerance to light.
Psittacosis is primarily a lung disease but it can involve several organs. Some reports show that inflammation of the liver, lining of the heart cavity, the heart muscle, and the brain can occur.

The course of the disease is variable and it can result in death. However, fatal cases are rare. In mild cases, fever may continue for three weeks or more.

How is psittacosis recognized and treated?For accurate diagnosis of psittacosis, a doctor must know that the person has been exposed to birds and that the suspected birds are infected with Chlamydia psittaci. Laboratory examinations can identify the organism and detect the signs of infection. Patients who develop psittacosis require treatment with specific drugs. The disease is very responsive to tetracycline but is resistant to penicillin.