Another FAQ series
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Beberapa informasi yang penting tentang EI:
What is EI?
EI stands for Equine Influenza, or to make it easier to say, people called it Horse Flu.
What does cause EI?
Just like other flu diseases, EI is caused by influenza virus. The strain of influenza virus that causes EI is believed to be H3N8.
Is EI fatal to horse? What are the symptoms?
EI is a major viral respiratory disease which is highly contagious among horses. This EI virus produce more severe symptoms compare to other horse respiratory viruses (Equine Herpesvirus, Equine Adenovirus, and Equine Rhinovirus) with horses developing a fever and dry hacking cough. Horses become ill and reluctant to eat and drink for several days but usually recover in 2-3 weeks.
How can the virus spread among the horses?
This virus can be spread easily from horse to horse as a result of droplets and also from nasal discharge. The infected things, like infected rugs and brushes, can also spread the virus.
Can the virus jump to human or other species?
EI is harmless to human and there is no evidence of the virus jumping to human and there is no expectation of it doing so. But the Equine Influenza virus (H3N8) can jump to dogs (greyhound) and develop similar symptoms and could be mistaken for common “kennel cough”.
Can EI be cured?
Just like other viral diseases, there is no drug for EI. The infected horses will develop their own immunity to protect themselves from future infection. However, many horses develop secondary infection which caused by bacterial and can lead to pneumonia and other worse conditions. Good nursing and antibiotics, if necessary, are important part for treatment.
How can we prevent EI?
Vaccination is the best way to deal with this disease.
Is there any economical problem due to EI?
The outbreak of EI will have a very devastating effect in horse populations and huge financial loses for countries with high number of racing industries such as Australia.
Geographical distribution of EI in 2006
Geographical distribution of EI in 2007
EI status in Indonesia
Based on the OIE sites, EI is non notifiable disease in Indonesia and the disease never reported in Indonesia
From: many sources and map from WAHID, OIE sites
drh. Chandramaya Siska Damayanti, MSi