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Friday, September 09, 2005

Deer Disease Precautions: For Virginians

With the deer hunting season soon approaching, concerns of the chronic wasting disease (CWD) found in a deer in West Virginia should not be taken lightly.

CWD is similar to Mad Cow Disease, and while a link to human transmission has not been established. It is too early to rule out a possible a link.

The Chronic Wasting Disease Alliance reports:

"...public health officials advise caution and recommend that human exposure to the CWD infectious agent be avoided as they continue to evaluate any potential health risk. Hunters are encouraged not to consume meat from animals known to be infected with CWD. In addition, hunters should take certain precautions when field dressing and processing deer or elk taken in areas where CWD is found. "

The CDC has stated that their is no scientific evidence to support concern and the possibility of human infection is small or may not exist at all. Game commissions and health officials from areas that have had outbreaks advise you to exercise precautions. Go here to see the precautions.

The Chronic Wasting Disease Alliance also reports:

"During the period 1997-1998, three cases of sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) occurred in the U.S. in young adults. These individuals had consumed venison. This led to speculation about possible transmission of CWD from deer or elk to humans. However, review of the clinical records and pathological studies of all three cases by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia, did not find a causal link to CWD. "

We recommend that you go to the The Chronic Wasting Disease Alliance website, if you plan to do deer hunting this season and read their recommendations.


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