In Australia, a child died after contracting a rare virus that usually only affects pigeons.

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An unnamed two-year-old girl was taken to Prince of Wales Hospital in Randwick, New South Wales, after three weeks of nausea, vomiting and cold-like symptoms, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

Just six months before the onset of symptoms, she completed a second course of chemotherapy to treat acute pre-B cell lymphoblastic leukemia.

Her condition continued to deteriorate and four days later she developed febrile epilepsy syndrome associated with the infection and began epileptic seizures.

Doctors performed a variety of tests, including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), autoimmune studies, evaluation of genetic abnormalities, and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests, which checked for the presence of bacterial, fungal, viral, or mycobacterial pathogens, but they all found nothing.

The girl was given antivirals, antibiotics, and anticonvulsants to help heal her brain swelling and reduce discomfort, but nothing relieved her symptoms as her brain continued to swell.

She died 27 days after being admitted to the hospital.

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After her death, medical tests showed that she was a carrier of a severe strain of avian paramyxovirus-1 APMV-1, which causes Newcastle disease. Newcastle disease is a highly contagious and deadly viral disease affecting birds and poultry (usually pigeons), named after the city where it was first discovered in 1926.

Medical experts concluded that the child died of cerebral edema caused by an infection that began in her nose or mouth due to the possible action of feces or fluids from infected pigeons.

The first documented case of human infection with APMV-1 was reported in Australia in 1942. Since then, 485 human cases have been reported worldwide, more than half of which are in the United Kingdom. Four people died in the Netherlands, the United States, China and France. In rare cases, the virus infects people and usually causes only conjunctivitis.

Experts point out that this case highlights the link with leukemia treatment, infectious triggers and neurological complications, especially in young patients.

Recall that a girl with an incredibly rare disease sneezes 12000 times a day. She had to drop out of school.